Originally Posted by iacas
Not to me. It's an arbitrary thing you're adding - the calendar year. That's like saying someone is even less likely to win four consecutive majors that have their final rounds end on dates that end with a multiple of 3.
Or, using your definition, I could easily show that winning a major in which Jack Nicklaus finishes second while Ben Hogan finishes third and Adam Scott finishes in fourth is so "difficult" it's flat out impossible.
I consider winning four consecutive majors over eight months more difficult than winning four over five months. The latter requires a much shorter period of "staying hot."
I'm using "difficulty" in reference to the athletic skill required. You're using it as a substitute for probability with arbitrary constraints (calendar years).
Arbitrary? Only in so far that definitions themselves are arbitrary, and that's how this particular accomplishment has always been somewhat loosely defined. As I said, there are really 3 different definitions. One for lifetime, one for season, and now.....the most recent to even be separately acknowledged.....Tiger's, for consecutive wins that span two seasons.
As for "staying hot"......if someone wins the Masters 3 years apart, did they have to "stay hot" for 3 years? Of course not, they just need to be playing extraordinarily well each week. In fact, given that everyone experiences an ebb and flow in their performance, I'd offer that someone probably has to stay "hot" longer to win all 4 in the same year, simply because there isn't enough time for a recovery in performance if a slump does happen, whereas with a 6 month break, there is.......hell, there's even time for a break to recharge and recover from any injuries between the 3d and 4th.
The athletic skill required for achieving a career GS is based on the difficulty of winning each of the individual tournaments. From purely an athletic perspective, it's no more difficult to win 4 in a row than it is to win 4 in a lifetime. I don't think that you or I think that Tiger's accomplishment of 4 in a row isn't "harder" than that of Jack having won all 4, but not consecutively. The athleticism is the same, the difficulty in achieving the consecutive wins lies in the mathematical improbability of having to win the first Major, then a second, and then a third, before you can even contemplate having won the fourth. And that same improbability is why I consider the season GS to be harder (more unlikely, improbable, difficult to achieve......use whichever adjective you like) than to string any 4 together consecutively. In a 25 year career, you only have 25 "starts" at a season GS.......you'll have 100 "starts" at a consecutive slam.
There are people who don't think Tiger has accomplished anything any more difficult than the career slam....and I disagree with that, for exactly the reasons I outlined above. But if you agree that Tiger's accomplishment eclipses Jack's, then you have to acknowledge that a season GS would eclipse the consecutive slam that spans 2 seasons.
Originally Posted by Golfingdad
Although ... isn't he only going to be playing in 100 majors in a 25 year career?