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Is Phil the 3rd Best Player of All Time?


DeadMan

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2 minutes ago, saevel25 said:

What was the world ranking of Hogan, Palmer, Player, Watson? Trick question, there wasn't a world ranking at the time. 

Umm... Jack Nicklaus never won the Vardon Trophy... Vardon Trophy - Wikipedia

Hard to win a money title with Tiger won it 9 times from 1997 to 2009. Vijay having his epic run in the other seasons. Duval having an exceptional year. 

Also, it's tough to break down if not getting a world #1 ranking matters since it is a point system that if fluid. Maybe Player of the year matters more, but also strength of competition matters. 

1) a silly trick question.  It is like dinging Jack for no WGCs.  Or dinging Hogan because he only played in half as many majors as Jack (oops, which Jack himself actually did)

2) yup no Vardons for Jack (although he awarded himself several virtual Vardons) and if it weren't for his numerous money title, player of the year awards, and his handful of dominant years that would be a much bigger point.  But it shows why we need to look at the entirety of someone's career, not just pick one thing as decisive (like 18>15).

3). Yup it was hard to win a money title between '97 and '08, but not impossible, as demonstrated by Vijay and Duval.  And the field was basically clear of Tiger from 2010 to 2012 and Phil couldn't take advantage of it, and he had a half dozen years before Tiger hit the scene where he was one of the best players, but still couldn't win a POY, a money title, or a Vardon

 

But then again, what the hell do I know?

Rich - in name only

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Just now, turtleback said:

3). Yup it was hard to win a money title between '97 and '08, but not impossible, as demonstrated by Vijay and Duval.  And the field was basically clear of Tiger from 2010 to 2012 and Phil couldn't take advantage of it, and he had a half dozen years before Tiger hit the scene where he was one of the best players, but still couldn't win a POY, a money title, or a Vardon

I can look at it in two ways...

1) A super short, but absolutely dominant 6 year stretch can easily make someone a top 5 of all time. 
2) A long career, but no dominant years. Like 12 out of 15 years of being a top 5 golfer. 

If you are going to not have dominant years, then you better have consistency over a very long time. I think Phil's career does enough to warrant him high consideration for being the 3rd best ever. 

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3 hours ago, turtleback said:

 

Jack is on record as saying most PGA wins, i.e., beating out Sam Snead's 82 was the criteria for GOAT.  Until he realized he couldn't do that and changed his mind.  Check out post 5439 in the Tiger v. Tiger thread for the grisly details of Jack's twisting the criteria to favor himself.

And Tiger has changed the metric from major wins.  Your point appears to be selective.  You can add another stat in that Jack wasn't such a personal sleaze which should count for something.  

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52 minutes ago, saevel25 said:

Umm... Jack Nicklaus never won the Vardon Trophy.

Not a fan of Jack at all.  But, to his credit, he was selective in the tournaments he played.  All majors and regular tournaments on the tougher courses.  No easy tracks to improve his scoring average.

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43 minutes ago, saevel25 said:

1) A super short, but absolutely dominant 6 year stretch can easily make someone a top 5 of all time. 
2) A long career, but no dominant years. Like 12 out of 15 years of being a top 5 golfer. 

Yeah, I try to take a look at the totality of a career.

If Tiger was super-dominant for five years, I don't know that @turtleback would give him GOAT status. One year? No way.

So even @turtleback can claim he cares about "dominance" but the length of the dominance plays a role.

Phil was a top five player, in the Tiger era, for a LOOOOOOONG freaking time.

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10 minutes ago, Birdieputt said:

And Tiger has changed the metric from major wins.  Your point appears to be selective.  You can add another stat in that Jack wasn't such a personal sleaze which should count for something.  

And where is you evidence on that? Jack said a lot of things that today would have been called out but got away with it. Arnie slept around. Perhaps Jack did too but no one cared back then because men were men. Remove your personal bias and just look at the accomplishments.

BTW, the subject is about Phil, not Jack or Tiger.
 

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2 hours ago, Birdieputt said:

And Tiger has changed the metric from major wins.  Your point appears to be selective.  You can add another stat in that Jack wasn't such a personal sleaze which should count for something.  

When did Tiger change the metric?  In what way specifically is my point selective?

And Jack was not pure as the driven snow.  He's lucky he made his racial remarks when he did and not when there was an internet to cancel him.  And his redefining of the GOAT criteria repeatedly until he found a way to claim it and simultaneously write out every great player who preceded him was pretty sleazy in a different way.  But IAC we're talking about greatest player of all time, not the Miss Congeniality award.

1 hour ago, iacas said:

Yeah, I try to take a look at the totality of a career.

If Tiger was super-dominant for five years, I don't know that @turtleback would give him GOAT status. One year? No way.

So even @turtleback can claim he cares about "dominance" but the length of the dominance plays a role.

Phil was a top five player, in the Tiger era, for a LOOOOOOONG freaking time.

I have phrased my criteria as dominance over a sufficiently long period of time.  Which certainly excludes someone who was never dominant for a single year.  I agree with your characterization of Phil's career.  I count it against him, though, that he was never dominant in the many years before Tiger came into the scene and the years when Tiger wasn't a factor.

But then again, what the hell do I know?

Rich - in name only

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2 hours ago, turtleback said:

First of all, reasoning about basketball is irrelevant, IMO, since there is a vast gulf between team sports and individual sports.

Secondly, we don't need a carefully designed study.  The Jack v Tiger thread clearly demonstrates that in virtally ever way, other than the simplistic 18>15, Tiger was not just ahead of Jack, but way ahead of Jack.

Raw scoring average is a bad metric because of the vast difference in golf courses over time.  Adjusted scoring average is better, but not great because we don;'t have that data going back that many years.  And strokes gains methodology might be better but we have even fewer years of that data.

I see a lot of what I was indicating may have been missed or misunderstood. Basketball is completely relevant in that their methodology of finding meaningful measurements and comparing player performance in the same era ports to any sport. They are measuring performance against the same pool in the same conditions. It doesn't matter that some players might have had nothing but a set shot whereas the modern game revolves around pace aid space...it is not comparing scoring 20 points to 20 points, it is comparing performance in an era. It is not comparing a guy playing tournaments with persimmon woods and balata balls to a graphite wielding 4-part ball...it is comparing persimmon/balata to persimmon/balata and measuring their superiority against the people they played against.

For a golfer it would be comparing performance against the same course in the same tournament across a series of tournaments.  Players who played in the same tournaments, as players tend to do, you can compare their performances. I have no idea how many tournaments Woods and Mickelson both played in...or Nicklaus and Palmer and Player and random guys whose names I don't know. But I do know anyone in the conversation for "best of all time" will have dozens, maybe hundreds of tournaments where they play against a field.  

And comparing how they scored against the field in those conditions is quite measurable. 

With the way courses change their setup from tournament to tournament, comparing a players raw score in a tournament to the other people in the field at that tournament, that moment in time, would, for those means of comparison, be vastly superior to adjusted. It compares actual performance in actual conditions. that is the point.  Winning with -10 in an "easy"...is it the Players that sets up as hard as possible? in 2015 versus winning at +2 the next time it rotates to that course when it is set up extremely penal* is not the same...but comparing the player who won at -10 compared to the people who played that year, and then comparing the performance of the player who won at +2 to the people who play the same tournament has far more "no statistical noise" accuracy than adjusted scores. It compares actual, historical performances. Who did what against the field?

Strokes gained may or may not be relevant at this time, it may be other stats. The upshot is, there actually is a statistical way to measure performance against peers. If someone cared enough to do it they could. And when they were done with it, someone would come along with a comment similar to the one above about Tiger being better than Jack because...

 

 

 

 

 

*I don't actually know which tournament makes their setup really hard or what winning scores tend to be, so am making educated guess it is the players. But now that I think about it...might be the US Open? I am a heretic in that while I love golfing, thinking about golf and reading about it, watching it bores me to tears and I don't do it. 

 

 

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1 hour ago, darthweasel said:

Basketball is completely relevant

Hard disagree. Team game, changing rules, etc.

1 hour ago, darthweasel said:

It is not comparing a guy playing tournaments with persimmon woods and balata balls to a graphite wielding 4-part ball...it is comparing persimmon/balata to persimmon/balata and measuring their superiority against the people they played against.

You have no idea how good the field was at the time. Jack played against a LOT of B players and even a good number of C players. Tiger played against almost entirely A and A- players.

1 hour ago, darthweasel said:

For a golfer it would be comparing performance against the same course in the same tournament across a series of tournaments

You can give a whole field better equipment and technique and because the course is significantly different, create a situation in which they all score worse.

1 hour ago, darthweasel said:

And comparing how they scored against the field in those conditions is quite measurable.

Measurable and relevant/important are two very different things.

Say Jack shoots 271 while the field averages 287. Then 50 years later Tiger does the same thing. There are a billion other things at play there, including the equipment: modern equipment makes it easier for even the A- players to compete with the A+ players.

1 hour ago, darthweasel said:

Who did what against the field?

The fields are quite different now than they used to be.

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14 hours ago, iacas said:

 

The fields are quite different now than they used to be.

exactly the point of the way they are doing research. it compares how a player did against the field they played against. 

 

 

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1 minute ago, darthweasel said:

exactly the point of the way they are doing research. it compares how a player did against the field they played against.

Which doesn't tell you anything about the difference in eras.

A book came out that purported to measure player performance across eras.

It used Z-Score and some other things to try to measure player performance.

It was lousy. Again, Jack had a higher Z-Score because he played against lousy players.

The only thing I could possibly see working is a long-term Sagarin-type thing, wherein the players before Jack and after Tiger and everyone in between was charted over the course of their careers, etc. And even then, you'd have less overlap than you'd really like to see.

Heck, I just re-read my first post in that topic, and it concludes with:

On 2/8/2019 at 2:37 PM, iacas said:

If you see the book in the store, especially you @turtleback, go ahead and pick it up to look through some of the charts. You'll see what a joke it is when many, many players are listed well above, say, Phil Mickelson, including many women players. I think Phil is 17th, despite having won 40+ times with… five majors in the modern era.

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Phil is not #3, yet. 

He moves closer with his over 50 PGA Major. He would move up if he wins the next major for a career grand slam. He moves up by demonstrating a certain longevity competitiveness over his remaining playing years. At some point, I would have to consider amateur, professional, and senior dominance and if he could continue to be a force on the PGA tour by moving up the rankings, he could get there. 

And of course we can compare golfers across the generations. We do it almost daily here! 

 

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3 minutes ago, TourSpoon said:

He moves up by demonstrating a certain longevity competitiveness over his remaining playing years.

He's won PGA Tour events over 30 years apart.

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Just now, iacas said:

He's won PGA Tour events over 30 years apart.

That gets him closer for sure with him winning PGA Tour Events as an amateur, professional, and now a senior, but is it enough? 

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20 hours ago, turtleback said:



And Jack was not pure as the driven snow.  He's lucky he made his racial remarks when he did and not when there was an internet to cancel him. 

Nicklaus demonstrated a lot his true character on Twitter in late 2020. He has absolutely been "cancelled" by many people. Fortunately for him, he is judged primarily on his  achievements whilst playing golf.

Also, try to track down a documentary called The Green Menace. He is not the most popular person on the planet.

But..... none of this diminishes his reputation as arguably the second best golfer of all time. 😛

In the race of life, always back self-interest. At least you know it's trying.

 

 

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47 minutes ago, Shorty said:

Nicklaus demonstrated a lot his true character on Twitter in late 2020. He has absolutely been "cancelled" by many people. Fortunately for him, he is judged primarily on his  achievements whilst playing golf.

Also, try to track down a documentary called The Green Menace. He is not the most popular person on the planet.

But..... none of this diminishes his reputation as arguably the second best golfer of all time. 😛

Absolutely.  As I said elsewhere, we are talking about the greatest golfers of all time, not Miss Congeniality contestants.

1 hour ago, TourSpoon said:

Phil is not #3, yet. 

He moves closer with his over 50 PGA Major. He would move up if he wins the next major for a career grand slam. He moves up by demonstrating a certain longevity competitiveness over his remaining playing years. At some point, I would have to consider amateur, professional, and senior dominance and if he could continue to be a force on the PGA tour by moving up the rankings, he could get there. 

And of course we can compare golfers across the generations. We do it almost daily here! 

 

If he is going to have dominance he'll have to do it at the senior level, because he has never done it at the PGATour level.

But then again, what the hell do I know?

Rich - in name only

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10 minutes ago, turtleback said:

If he is going to have dominance he'll have to do it at the senior level, because he has never done it at the PGATour level.

Never? 

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1 hour ago, Shorty said:

Nicklaus demonstrated a lot his true character on Twitter in late 2020. He has absolutely been "cancelled" by many people. Fortunately for him, he is judged primarily on his  achievements whilst playing golf.

Also, try to track down a documentary called The Green Menace. He is not the most popular person on the planet.

But..... none of this diminishes his reputation as arguably the second best golfer of all time. 😛

I daresay that the people trying to cancel him probably makes him more popular.  He doesn't have to take a back seat to anybody in the popularity department considering all the things he has done off the golf course.  

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