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Jason Dufner Voids Check after Bet with PGA Pro

post #1 of 40
Thread Starter 

Cool story about Jason Dufner and a PGA pro during the PGA Championship.  Would have been a real douchey move if Dufner had cashed the check.

 

http://www.golfchannel.com/news/jason-sobel/after-major-win-dufner-voids-bet-with-pga-pro/

 

Quote:

It all starts with a guy named Rob Labritz. Even if you don’t recognize the name, you likely remember his YouTube moment. He’s the longtime New York club professional who holed a wedge shot from 95 yards at the PGA Professional National Championship to collect the 20th and final spot in the field at this year’s PGA Championship.

Keegan Bradley, Rob Labritz

Labritz (at far right above) is no newbie to the glitz and glamour of the big-time. This was his fourth appearance in the year’s final major and he’s long owned connections all over the golf world. It was through one of these connections, St. John’s University coach Frank Darby, that Labritz found himself in a juicy practice round match on Tuesday at Oak Hill Country Clublast month.

Darby set up Labritz with Keegan Bradley, one of his former players and, of course, a former PGA champion. The two of them would prepare for the tournament by playing a match against heavyweights Dufner and Dustin Johnson.

At promptly 8:30 a.m. Tuesday morning, the foursome stood on the first tee at the famed venue and playfully discussed the day’s wager.

“Dufner and Keegan started talking about the bet,” recounts Labritz, the director of golf at GlenArbor Golf Club in Bedford Hills, N.Y. “Dufner says, ‘What are we playing for? A hundred thousand? Two hundred thousand?’ He’s like, ‘Keegan, what did you make, $7 million last year? I thought you wanted to play for some cash.’”

Labritz laughs at the recollection, adding there was more than a little sarcastic embellishment laced in that offer.

“I said, ‘Guys, that’s a little out of my price range. I had to cancel two ladies clinics and a junior clinic just to be here today.’ So we played for a $500 closeout.”

It didn’t start well for the club pro. He and Bradley combined for a best ball score of par on each of the first five holes. Dufner and Johnson countered with birdies on all five, quickly taking a 5-up lead.

Labritz finally birdied the eighth hole, but his team was still 6-down. A birdie by Johnson on the ninth extended the lead to 7 at the turn. Even after birdies from Labritz on 10, 11 and 13 and one from Bradley on 14, they found themselves 4-down with four to play. On the 16th tee, they pressed for half the amount, with Bradley taking the banter to another level.

“Keegan goes, ‘Hey Rob, did I ever tell you this story? I was 4 down with five to go and I won this tournament,’” Labritz says, recalling Bradley’s needling of Dufner about the PGA Championship finish from two years earlier. “Dufner goes, ‘Hey, it ain’t going to happen that way this week.’”

After a halve on the final hole pushed a second press, Labritz and Bradley found themselves $750 in the hole – which was a slight problem for the club pro.

“I didn’t have $750 in my wallet, so I went into the locker, got my checkbook out and wrote a check to Dufner. I left it in his locker.”

In the memo section of the check, he wrote:

SORRY FOR THE CHECK + THX FOR THE WHOOPIN.

Jason Dufner

 

The truth is, it really wasn’t a “whoopin” – at least individually. Labritz says he shot a score of “1 or 2 under” and Dufner was “1 or 2 over.”

All of which became even more amazing five days later, when Dufner posted a final-round 68 to claim his first major championship title.

And yes, a $1.445 million winner’s check.

Suddenly that $750 check from the Tuesday match didn’t quite mean as much. So rather than cashing it, Dufner called a late audible following the victory.

“A few days after I missed the cut, I got this letter in the mail,” Labritz explains. “It was written out to me in cursive.”

The letter was from Dufner. It included Labritz’s check with the word “VOID” written through it and a note from the champ:

ROB,

GREAT TIME PLAYING WITH YOU LAST TUESDAY. I JUST COULDN’T CASH THIS CHECK. ALL THE BEST TO YOU AND YOUR FAMILY IN 2013 + HOPE TO SEE YOU IN 2014 @ VALHALLA.

JASON DUFNER

The gesture floored Labritz.

“Oh my God, are you kidding me? That’s just phenomenal. It’s just a classy move,” he says. “I think he’s a great guy.”

If Dufner didn’t win over enough fans with his demeanor and his waggles and his ball-striking and – of course – his PGA Championship victory, this story of a classy move toward a fellow golf professional should help matters.

post #2 of 40
Every time I hear something new about Dufner, it makes me like him even more. Seems like a really cool dude.
post #3 of 40
Got to love the Duf-man.
post #4 of 40

I wonder if Dufner would have done this if he DIDN'T win the $1.44 mil the week after this bet..

post #5 of 40

Class move, but not really a choice there. He would have been a real d*ck to cash that check. 

post #6 of 40
Why? I love the move by Dufner, but it wouldn't have been a dick move to keep the earnings of a bet won square and fair IMO. It says more about Dufner's class to return the check than being a dick if he hadn't.
post #7 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave H View Post

Why? I love the move by Dufner, but it wouldn't have been a dick move to keep the earnings of a bet won square and fair IMO. It says more about Dufner's class to return the check than being a dick if he hadn't.

 

Agreed.

It was the right thing to do. Imagine what a jerk he'd be if he had it cashed.  I'll bet there are some guys out there who would, though.

post #8 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by jbest View Post

I wonder if Dufner would have done this if he DIDN'T win the $1.44 mil the week after this bet..

I bet he would have done the same thing. Three wins last year, it's not like he was in the poorhouse.
post #9 of 40

Not cashing the check was one thing, but writing a personal note and mailing it to him is what makes it a classy move. 

post #10 of 40

Pretty cool that he didn't cash it and even cooler that he wrote the note. It would have been kind of a douche move to actually cash it though, but like others have said, there are some out there that would have.

post #11 of 40
I would like to think that Duff Daddy would have done the same no matter the outcome. The world needs more class like that.
post #12 of 40

I think that the PGA has a higher percentage of good guys than any other pro sport! Mr Dufner is one of them good guys. 

post #13 of 40

$750 is peanuts to Dufner, win or no win that week, but not necessarily to Labritz. I would hope most in Duf's position would do the same.

post #14 of 40

Tiger would have cashed that ish so fast that the canceled check would have made it back to Labrtiz' house before he did.

post #15 of 40

I think it's the amount that make people think he would have been a douche.  If it were a $100 bet won fair and square on a friendly golf match that's different than $750 especially to a club pro.  The amount of money a club pro makes is not something most would envy probably (well I would because I make just enough to get by).  They're no different financially than Joe and Bill from the insurance firm down the street who tee off saturday morning - the only differences?  The Club Pro gets to play for free - and he's DAMN good at the game.

post #16 of 40
Wasn't a Dufner fan before, but now I am. a1_smile.gifa1_smile.gifa1_smile.gif
post #17 of 40

Nothing wrong with cashing that check, but I seem to like Duffner more and more whenever I read about him.

post #18 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by JerryTimes View Post
 

Nothing wrong with cashing that check, but I seem to like Duffner more and more whenever I read about him.

Man code says you pay up on your bets and cashing the check would have been reasonable. However, Duf understands that Labritz is not in their league of income and felt compassion on the guy. It was a rock solid act giving the guy back a car payment.

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