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Tiger Wants to Ban the Long Putter - Page 2

post #19 of 781

 

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Are you sure you've thought this through?

 

Rhetorical question?

post #20 of 781

 

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... and calling it an unfair advantage is to call it cheating.

 

Where and when did he say that?

post #21 of 781


 

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Originally Posted by iacas View Post

 

 

"Professionals" != "PGA Tour." That's all I'm saying. I'm fairly certain the USGA is never going to make a rule that is different for "the PGA Tour" than for everyone else.


Even if they entertained it, the PGA Tour would have to buy in and I don't see any banning happening.  Heck, they may even go back on the old grooves. A lot can happen before 2024 and in a few more years the wedge market could explode if the manufacturers could make them again.  

 

post #22 of 781
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LuciusWooding View Post

He dislikes other players' method of putting, and calling it an unfair advantage is to call it cheating.

I'm not as sure about that as you are, but it doesn't matter, because he didn't call it an unfair advantage. The more sensational phrases that you quoted were from some reporter, not from Tiger. What Tiger actually said is that he's not a fan of the long putter, and he is lobbying to get the rule changed. He is well within his rights to do that. He didn't say anything about cheating, or unfair advantage, or dirty rotten bastards. And the fact that he has been trying to get the rule changed "for a number of years" proves that he can't just snap his fingers and get something done, even when he ruled the game. Despite the lurid prose of the reporter, nothing much has changed, and nothing indicates that anything will change. But if Tiger's comments gets everybody talking about it, then I think that's a good thing, because the longer they go without coming to a decision, the harder it will be to change.

I've already said that I favor a ban on the long putter, but even if they don't ban it, I think they should make a public announcement one way or the other. If they don't want to ban it, they should give people a solid guarantee that they won't. Otherwise, young players don't know which way they should learn to putt.

Quote:
Adding to my point is that he has tried a belly putter in practice, considered using it, but decided not to because he didn't like it! So do you think if he thought it would really help his game he'd be saying that?

I'm not a mind reader, so I don't know. I do know that I, and several prominent players like Jack Nicklaus, want restrictions on clubs and balls so that golf courses don't have to be lengthened every five years, and the clubs and balls definitely help our game.
post #23 of 781
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by WWBDD View Post

Quote:
... and calling it an unfair advantage is to call it cheating.

Where and when did he say that?


Tiger didn't say that. A reporter at today's press conference used the phrase in her question. Here is the entire exchange:

==================

"Q. There was an announcement yesterday that the USGA and R&A are re-looking or reexamining implementing a rule that would outlaw anchoring belly putters, chest putters. Do you think anchoring the clubs confers an unfair advantage? Would you ever use a belly putter? Do you think being able to putt without anchoring is a fundamental part of the game?

TIGER WOODS: I've never been a fan of it. I believe it's the art of controlling the body and club and swing, the pendulum motion. I believe that's how it should be played. I'm a traditionalist when it comes to that. I've talked to Peter about this, Peter Dawson, for a number of years and gone back and forth of how we could word it. My idea was to have it so that the putter would be equal to or less than the shortest club in your bag. And I think that would be able to get away from any type of belly anchoring. You can still anchor the putter like Bernhard Langer did against the forearm. But that's still the art of swinging the club, too, at the same time.

But I think you can get away from the belly or the long putter by that type of wording, whether or not they do it or not, and Peter's looked into it for a number of years, trying to get it to work. And do you actually measure everybody's sand wedge and putter before you go out and play? That's another thing, too."
=======================

As I said earlier, he didn't bring it up; he was asked a direct question about it; he answered honestly and thoughtfully; and he didn't say anything about cheating, unfair advantages, broken rules, or anything of the kind.
post #24 of 781

I don't see why Tiger would say anything if he didn't feel the belly putter was a threat to him. He's too smart and too careful around the media to call anyone a cheater to their face, but that's obviously the issue here. To lobby to outlaw that type of stroke is a clear indication he considers it an unfair advantage. It's nothing to do with the semantics of what defines a stroke and everything to do with a perceived advantage from the belly putter. How is a golfer saying "I don't like how he uses a type of stroke that should be illegal" not stirring the pot? Clearly implies he thinks it's cheating. There is a difference between a loophole and a violation in the rules, I'll admit. But I find the whole thing arbitrary and reactionary.

 

Anybody remember the fact that long putters have been in use since before Tiger played, back in the 80s? Now, 30 years later, after he has already peaked in his career and been on tour for 15 years, he decides to start pushing the issue? I don't like it. Seems like he wants to add and change rules to make the game more advantageous for himself.

 

Interestingly, what happened with the spitball in baseball was that it was banned, but existing players were grandfathered in. I doubt that any deal like that will sit well based on how the game is regulated, but it's a similar debate in some ways, with the exception that someone got killed by a spitball.

 

As for Nicklaus, I agree with him that the ball needs to be stopped at some point, but clubs already are regulated. The worst that could happen is that they'll get more forgiving and eventually max out the COR to the legal limit on all clubs. Shafts might really ruffle some feathers in a few years though; they're already adding spin back to the wedges and making woods and hybrids insanely long and light.


Edited by LuciusWooding - 2/7/12 at 11:33pm
post #25 of 781

I'm glad some tour pros are starting to speak up about this.  We need more to do so if it's going to be banned.  At the same time, I do agree with some folks who think it's pretty late in the game to do it.  Some people have been wielding it for years now.

 

Brandon

post #26 of 781

Early last season I switched back to a short putter after about 6 years using a belly putter. 

 

My conclusion about the belly putter (or other long versions) is that there are 2 main benefits.  The main one is psychological.  If you ever get yourself into a situation where you are convinced you can't putt, then a major switch to a totally different method can get you into a positive frame of mind. 

 

The second, and less important, benefit, is that you have fewer ways to move a belly putter.  You cannot, for example, "push" a belly putter. 

 

I switched back once I started to properly study how to putt.  If you develop good stroke mechanics, then I believe a short putter is better.  You have more feel on long putts. 

 

When I first went to a belly putter, I truly believed that it was better on short putts.  Once I got my putting mechanics sorted out, the short putt advantage of the belly putter went away.   

 

I would NOT favor a ban, based on these experiences.  I don't think top players who can putt well have anything to fear from players using the belly putter, and I think it is good for the game to have other ways to putt for players who lose confidence. 

 

I still have my belly putter in the garage, just in case!

post #27 of 781
Quote:
Originally Posted by LuciusWooding View Post
 Seems like he wants to add and change rules to make the game more advantageous for himself.

 


Do you really think this? Do you really think it's all about him? Surely you don't think he's that selfish and narcissistic.

More likely, like the average player he thinks that someting which used to be an oddity and an embarrassment to the player using it is now almost becoming mainstream, and, generally, I'd say that, like may here, Tiger thinks it's a bad look for the game. And - he thinks it's against what a golf "swing" should be.

 

 

post #28 of 781

I must be in the minority but I hope they don't change the rules.... If using a long putter (belly or broomstick) is such an advantage then why isn't everyone on tour using it?

 

I don't really get the arguement of not being able to anchor against the body either.... I use my 4 wood around the green a lot and I wedge the end of the shaft in my belly, would this too become illegal? The irony is I only tried it as I read about it in Tiger's book....

 

 

post #29 of 781
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shorty View Post


 Surely you don't think he's that selfish and narcissistic.

 

 

 



Is there another Tiger Woods that we don't know about?

post #30 of 781
Do we really need a new thread on this subject just because Tiger chimed in?

I'm not a fan of players being able to anchor clubs to the body and agree with Tiger on this one. I don't believe it makes all that much of a difference, but still.
post #31 of 781
Quote:
Originally Posted by noefi13b View Post

I must be in the minority but I hope they don't change the rules.... If using a long putter (belly or broomstick) is such an advantage then why isn't everyone on tour using it?

 

I don't really get the arguement of not being able to anchor against the body either.... I use my 4 wood around the green a lot and I wedge the end of the shaft in my belly, would this too become illegal? The irony is I only tried it as I read about it in Tiger's book....

 

 

I'm with noefi13b, I don't really see an issue.  I use a regular putter and always will.  I tried a long putter for 1/2 a season many, many years ago and found that I had problems on long putts and don't plan to ever go back to one.  IMHO, a long putter might, and I mean might, make a poor putter average, or an average putter good, but it will not make any putter great or a great putter better, so I don't have much of an issue with them. 

 

If the PGA Tour wants to ban them, that's fine, but for the average Joe golfer, I'm all for keeping them in play if it helps them to enjoy the game.
 

 

post #32 of 781

Woods says ban the belly putter, offers solution

I agree with him completely.

 

 

 

http://sports.yahoo.com/golf/pga/news;_ylt=AsruxfxOHX4oQuW3No1giwgogsUF?slug=ap-woods-longputters

 

Woods offers solution against long putters

PEBBLE BEACH, California (AP)—Tiger Woods has a solution to long putters— make them no longer than the shortest club in the bag.

Woods said Tuesday at the Pebble Beach National Pro-Am he has “never been a fan” of long putters that players either anchor into their belly or the broom-style putters that are pressed against the chest.

“I believe it’s the art of controlling the body and club and swinging the pendulum motion,” Woods said. “I believe that’s how it should be played. I’m a traditionalist when it comes to that.”

Woods said he has spoken to Royal & Ancient chief executive Peter Dawson the last several years about how the language could be written in the Rules of Golf that effectively would ban such putters.

“My idea was to have it so that the putter would be equal to or less than the shortest club in your bag,” Woods said. “And I think with that, we’d be able to get away from any type of belly anchoring.”

He said the putter still could be anchored to the forearm, as two-time Masters championBernhard Langer once did.

Keegan Bradley became the first major champion to use a belly putter when he won the PGA Championship. Bill Haas used the same style when he won the Tour Championship to capture the FedEx Cup.

The belly putters gained momentum late last year with Bradley and Webb Simpson, who won twice late in the year and who nearly captured the PGA Tour money title. Both considered themselves good putters who felt as though anchoring the club to their stomach made them even better.

For years, most players believed only players who were desperate to improve used such putters.

Ernie Els once criticized the use of belly putters, but switched to one late last year and said: “As long as it’s legal, I’ll keep cheating like the rest of them.”

Phil Mickelson also experimented with a belly putter during the FedEx Cup playoffs last year. He since has gone back to a more conventional putter.

The R&A and USGA, while making no formal announcement, have said they would review such putters. While it would seem simple to ban long putters, it can help recreational players stay interested in the game, and any ban might also affect the equipment companies.

“If you look back at the interest in it, it really never changed for over 20 years,” USGA executive director Mike Davis said Saturday at its annual meeting. “Then all of a sudden in 2011 … this has become a much bigger topic. So the R&A and USGA have been talking about this at length, and we’re looking at it from the perspective as … what is good for the game for all golfers long term.”

Davis said it would be premature to speculate on a direction the governing bodies are going, except to say they are not ignoring the issue.

“It is something that we have taken a fresh look at, because there are more players in the game, both on the elite level and on the recreational level, using it,” Davis said. “I think we just want to be sure that we’re looking at all the angles and thinking about what is in the best interest, both the traditions of the game, the history of the game and what is what we think would be good for the game long term.”

 


Edited by walk18 - 2/8/12 at 10:38am
post #33 of 781

 


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Originally Posted by Zeph View Post

Do we really need a new thread on this subject just because Tiger chimed in?

 

I think so, yes. He still moves the needle.


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Originally Posted by LuciusWooding View Post

Adding to my point is that he has tried a belly putter in practice, considered using it, but decided not to because he didn't like it!

 

No, he hasn't. He's messed around with a few other players' belly putters and handed them back quickly with a smirk. He hasn't "considered using it." Cite your sources. Your entire post seems to conflate and confuse even Tiger's words with those of a reporter.

 

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Originally Posted by TourSpoon View Post

Even if they entertained it, the PGA Tour would have to buy in and I don't see any banning happening.  Heck, they may even go back on the old grooves. A lot can happen before 2024 and in a few more years the wedge market could explode if the manufacturers could make them again.


The grooves rule isn't being reversed, and if the USGA banned belly putters, the PGA Tour would follow right along. You're nuts if you think they'd play a game not following the worldwide Rules of Golf. The U.S. Open, the British Open, and every other national Open would be following the Rules. The USGA has deep roots at Augusta, so the Masters would obey the Rules of Golf. The PGA would conduct their major under the Rules. Heck, a press release from Tim Finchem would probably be issued at the same time as the USGA announcement, should it happen.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by LuciusWooding View Post

I don't see why Tiger would say anything if he didn't feel the belly putter was a threat to him.

 

Perhaps because he believes the game of golf should be played one way and currently it's not?

 

Belly putters do nothing to threaten me - heck, I could make the case that they help me because I can build and sell them to people - but I oppose them because I don't think the motions you make with them are as intended by the spirit of the game.

 

I don't think Tiger sees belly putters as a threat to HIM, but I do think he sees them as a threat to the game itself.

 


Quote:
Originally Posted by LuciusWooding View Post

To lobby to outlaw that type of stroke is a clear indication he considers it an unfair advantage.

 

No it's not. We're not allowed to hit putts using our putters like a pool cue. Is anyone going to say that's because it offers an advantage, or perhaps it's simply because that's now how the game is meant to be played?

 

 

 


Quote:
Originally Posted by LuciusWooding View Post

As for Nicklaus, I agree with him that the ball needs to be stopped at some point, but clubs already are regulated. The worst that could happen is that they'll get more forgiving and eventually max out the COR to the legal limit on all clubs. Shafts might really ruffle some feathers in a few years though; they're already adding spin back to the wedges and making woods and hybrids insanely long and light.

 

  1. The ball is highly regulated already. We've had an Overall Distance Standard for quite some time. You could make a ball that goes 30 yards farther today if you wanted to. It's not the tech holding things back, it's the existing rules.
  2. COR limits apply only to clubs with 15 degrees of loft or lower (or maybe < 15). Players don't want high-COR on their 6-iron. Distance control would be a mess.

 


 

 


 


 

 


 

 

post #34 of 781

I am one of the last people who would ever be accused of being a Tiger fan boy, but I have to say he rarely sounded better than in yesterday's news conference. He gave an honest and articulate opinion on a controversial topic.  I don't see how people are jumping to conclusions that this was motivated by insecurity or selfishness.

post #35 of 781

So I hate to confuse this discussion with data.  But as a spot check.

 

For the top 10 players. (i would have done more but I cant get to excel at the moment and had to use my calculator)

 

2011 Putting average 1.43 putts per hole

2001 putting averags  1.49 putts per hole

1992 Putting average 1.41 putts per hole

 

Hardly making a difference.

post #36 of 781


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TourSpoon View Post


 


Even if they entertained it, the PGA Tour would have to buy in and I don't see any banning happening.  Heck, they may even go back on the old grooves. A lot can happen before 2024 and in a few more years the wedge market could explode if the manufacturers could make them again.  

 


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post

The grooves rule isn't being reversed, and if the USGA banned belly putters, the PGA Tour would follow right along. You're nuts if you think they'd play a game not following the worldwide Rules of Golf. The U.S. Open, the British Open, and every other national Open would be following the Rules. The USGA has deep roots at Augusta, so the Masters would obey the Rules of Golf. The PGA would conduct their major under the Rules. Heck, a press release from Tim Finchem would probably be issued at the same time as the USGA announcement, should it happen.



Exactly...the PGA Tour would follow right along because they would be part of the discussion from the beginning as would other key players. If you think the USGA acts without consulting their constituents, then you are nuts. 

 

As far as the grooves rule being reversed I never said that it was being done. I will rephrase and say that I can foresee it being undone before 2024 for a few reasons with the top reasons being that they have not had a significant effect on the Tours and that the manufacturers would get a market boost because everyone who switched will now want the latest edge. It would be a win-win. I could be wrong, but a lot can happen in the next 12 years. Go ahead, call me crazy, but we are playing under different rules than the pros until that time.

d3_drool.gif

 

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