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turtleback

Poll: Who is #3?

Who is #3?  

81 members have voted

  1. 1. If we accept the premise that Jack and Tiger occupy the first 2 places on the all-time list, who is third on the list?

    • Ben Hogan
      25
    • Gary Player
      2
    • Phil Mickelson
      24
    • Tom Watson
      7
    • Arnold Palmer
      9
    • Sam Snead
      7
    • Byron Nelson
      1
    • Bobby Jones
      3
    • Other (please specify)
      3


109 posts / 11351 viewsLast Reply

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I here you.  It isn't who is the greatest.  How could that possibly be?  Someone is the shit...from one week, month, year, or era to the next.  Henry Cotton was the man...for a while.  Who remembers him?  Was he better than John Ball?  Who the f*** can say?

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I voted for Byron Nelson. And immediately decided I was wrong. If I could re-do my vote I'd go with Hogan. But, I don't think there is a clearcut #3.

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7 hours ago, commishbob said:

I voted for Byron Nelson. And immediately decided I was wrong. If I could re-do my vote I'd go with Hogan. But, I don't think there is a clearcut #3.

You can redo your vote.

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Went with Hogan. One criteria I used was had to be a grand slam winner. If you are behind just Jack and Tiger you have to have all 4 majors. He sits at 4 in all time wins. 

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Another vote for Ben Hogan here. The dude had a stretch were he played in 5 US Opens and won 4 finishing 3rd in the other! I think the numbers actually favor Sam over Ben 64 and 9 vs 81 and 7, but that US Open record has clinched it for me. I think Arnold Palmer doesn't get enough recognition nowadays as well, 62 wins 7 majors in an arguably tougher era in golf - vs the WWII era.

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9 minutes ago, Golfnutgalen said:

Another vote for Ben Hogan here. The dude had a stretch were he played in 5 US Opens and won 4 finishing 3rd in the other! I think the numbers actually favor Sam over Ben 64 and 9 vs 81 and 7, but that US Open record has clinched it for me. I think Arnold Palmer doesn't get enough recognition nowadays as well, 62 wins 7 majors in an arguably tougher era in golf - vs the WWII era.

 

No career Grand Slam is a crack in the armor for Palmer/Snead/Mickelson/Watson compared to Hogan.

Plus Hogan had the bus accident and played prime Tiger level golf after it. This should not be ignored. 

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A pretty good case can be made for Walter Hagen.  He won 11 majors despite there being no Open Championship in 1915 thru 1919, no US Open in 1917 or 1918, and no Masters until 1934.  

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33 minutes ago, Dr. Manhattan said:

 

No career Grand Slam is a crack in the armor for Palmer/Snead/Mickelson/Watson compared to Hogan.

Plus Hogan had the bus accident and played prime Tiger level golf after it. This should not be ignored. 

Indeed. I've tried in the past to make a case for both Byron and Snead over Hogan, but I don't think it's a strong enough argument. Correct me if I'm wrong, the US Open was huge back in the day by far the most important tournament in US golf up until maybe 1960 When the Masters gained a ton of traction.

Even ignoring the accident, Ben Hogan won 25% of his events up until age 40 which is something nobody has done since outside of Tiger Woods.

Best win percentages up to age 43 post-Bobby Jones

1.      Ben Hogan (43) 1932-1957 - 63 wins in 262 events (24.05%)

2.      Tiger Woods (43) 1996-2019 - 81 wins in 338 events (23.96%)

3.      Sam Snead (43) 1931-1956 - 75 wins in 341 events (21.99%)

4.      Byron Nelson (43) 1933-1955 - 52 wins in 261 events (19.92%)

5.      Jack Nicklaus (43) 1961-1983 - 71 wins in 429 events (16.55%)

6.      Arnold Palmer (43) 1954-1972 - 61 wins in 465 events (13.02%)

7.      Billy Casper (43) 1954-1975 - 51 wins in 464 events (10.99%)

8.      Phil Mickelson (43) 1991-2013 - 42 wins in 477 events (8.81%)

9.      Vijay Singh (43) 1992-2006 - 29 wins in 360 events (8.06%)

10.      Tom Watson (43) 1971-1993 - 37 wins in 497 events (7.44%)

6 minutes ago, Piz said:

A pretty good case can be made for Walter Hagen.  He won 11 majors despite there being no Open Championship in 1915 thru 1919, no US Open in 1917 or 1918, and no Masters until 1934.  

The only problem is Jones trounced Hagen in actual tournament play. And nobody is willing to give Jones credit anymore. In a stretch of 9 US Opens Jones finished won 4 and finished 2nd 4 more times! Jones winning percentage in the majors up to 1930 actually goes up if you exclude his amateur wins to a ludicrous 7/15 wins.

Edited by Golfnutgalen

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8 minutes ago, Golfnutgalen said:

Indeed. I've tried in the past to make a case for both Byron and Snead over Hogan, but I don't think it's a strong enough argument. Correct me if I'm wrong, the US Open was huge back in the day by far the most important tournament in US golf up until maybe 1960 When the Masters gained a ton of traction.

Even ignoring the accident, Ben Hogan won 25% of his events up until age 40 which is something nobody has done since outside of Tiger Woods.

Best win percentages up to age 43 post-Bobby Jones

1.      Ben Hogan (43) 1932-1957 - 63 wins in 262 events (24.05%)

 

 

2.      Tiger Woods (43) 1996-2019 - 81 wins in 338 events (23.96%)

3.      Sam Snead (43) 1931-1956 - 75 wins in 341 events (21.99%)

4.      Byron Nelson (43) 1933-1955 - 52 wins in 261 events (19.92%)

5.      Jack Nicklaus (43) 1961-1983 - 71 wins in 429 events (16.55%)

6.      Arnold Palmer (43) 1954-1972 - 61 wins in 465 events (13.02%)

7.      Billy Casper (43) 1954-1975 - 51 wins in 464 events (10.99%)

8.      Phil Mickelson (43) 1991-2013 - 42 wins in 477 events (8.81%)

 

 

9.      Vijay Singh (43) 1992-2006 - 29 wins in 360 events (8.06%)

10.      Tom Watson (43) 1971-1993 - 37 wins in 497 events (7.44%)

 

 

 

U.S. Open was definitely more important during the days of Hogan/Snead/Nelson. 

After the bus accident, Hogan won 6 of his 8 major starts from 1950 U.S. Open to 1953 British. The only person remotely close to this 75% win rate in the last 80 years is Tiger getting 7 of 11. 

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1 hour ago, Piz said:

A pretty good case can be made for Walter Hagen.  He won 11 majors despite there being no Open Championship in 1915 thru 1919, no US Open in 1917 or 1918, and no Masters until 1934.  

I disagree that the case is "pretty good" once you consider strength/depth of field.

Few consider Peter Thomson in the top 20 golfers who ever lived, and he has five major titles to his name. They're all the same one, and they were against incredibly weak fields.

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3 hours ago, Piz said:

A pretty good case can be made for Walter Hagen.  He won 11 majors despite there being no Open Championship in 1915 thru 1919, no US Open in 1917 or 1918, and no Masters until 1934.  

Not to mention 5 Western Opens which were regarded as majors back then.

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3 hours ago, Golfnutgalen said:

The only problem is Jones trounced Hagen in actual tournament play. And nobody is willing to give Jones credit anymore. In a stretch of 9 US Opens Jones finished won 4 and finished 2nd 4 more times! Jones winning percentage in the majors up to 1930 actually goes up if you exclude his amateur wins to a ludicrous 7/15 wins.

No, he didn't.  Sometimes Jones won, sometimes Hagen did.  They were each supreme, in their world, in matchplay, but since Hagen was a pro he couldn't play in the match play events Jones played in (the Amateurs) and since Jones was an Am he couldn't play in the match play events Hagen played in (the PGA).  Which was better at match play?

Hagen beat Jones in their famous Match of the Century, 12 & 11 in the nominally 72 hole match.

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1 hour ago, turtleback said:

No, he didn't.  Sometimes Jones won, sometimes Hagen did.  They were each supreme, in their world, in matchplay, but since Hagen was a pro he couldn't play in the match play events Jones played in (the Amateurs) and since Jones was an Am he couldn't play in the match play events Hagen played in (the PGA).  Which was better at match play?

Hagen beat Jones in their famous Match of the Century, 12 & 11 in the nominally 72 hole match.

The match of the Century is mostly meaningless though, not much more than a silly season event. As for the rest I disagree, both players played great golf in basically the same time frame and Jones was superior in the events they both attended. In the 13 majors they both played Jones got the better of Hagen 10 times and won 5 while Hagen never won an Open with Jones in the field. That's fairly dominant in my eyes. Also going back to the US Open importance, Jones won 4 vs Hagen's 2. I can see justifying ranking Hagen over Jones on the strength of his 45 total tour wins, but that seems a bit unfair because Jones only played a handful of events.

Still, Hagen was incredible. He won 24% of his events (45/190) by the time of his last win age 43. Definitely comparable to Hogan if we assume that they competed in a similar level of competition.

 

Edited by Golfnutgalen

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I voted for Hogan on this question, but that is just based on my opinion of him being the 3rd best player ever (arguably the GOAT if not for his injuries and WW2).

If we switch the question to Mount Rushmore, it becomes far more difficult because Mount Rushmore includes other stuff besides performance on the course. Tiger, Arnold, and Jack are all on Mount Rushmore. The #4 spot then becomes a question of Jones or Hogan. I would have to give this spot to Jones because The Masters would not exist without him.

Everything that Arnold/Jack/Tiger have done would not be as special without The Masters. Likewise for Hogan's performance at Augusta for that matter. That is a little trickier because Hogan is the one who came up with the Champions Dinner idea in the first place. But the golf course and tournament simply would not exist without Jones. 

Best Ever

  1. Tiger
  2. Jack
  3. Hogan
  4. Jones/Hagen (tie)
     

Mount Rushmore

  1. Jones
  2. Arnold
  3. Jack
  4. Tiger

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Gotta go with FIGJAM, aka Lefty, aka Phil. He fell victim to having his best years coincide with the an era where Tiger was essentially unbeatable. 

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On 4/20/2019 at 5:31 PM, Piz said:

A pretty good case can be made for Walter Hagen.  He won 11 majors despite there being no Open Championship in 1915 thru 1919, no US Open in 1917 or 1918, and no Masters until 1934.  

Hagen won lots of PGA titles that Jones didn't enter (nor the other top amateurs of the day), and never beat his illustrious rival at an Open championship (US or British). No question which of those two ranks higher. I'd also put Hogan above Snead, as although Sam won more in quantity, Hogan's almost total dominance in, again, the majors that mattered after coming back from his terrible injuries in 1949 eclipsed anything Snead did. Not maybe a candidate for number 3 but a definite top 5 shout for me would be Seve - not just for his 5 majors but the fact that he was the player who showed European golfers could win majors in the States against the very best like Nicklaus and Watson and opened the floodgates for Langer, Lyle, Faldo etc. 

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On 4/20/2019 at 2:19 PM, iacas said:

I disagree that the case is "pretty good" once you consider strength/depth of field.

Few consider Peter Thomson in the top 20 golfers who ever lived, and he has five major titles to his name. They're all the same one, and they were against incredibly weak fields.

Cant disagree with the Peter Thompson argument. I've heard his swing was wonderful (FWIW). But depth of field keeps coming up; It doesn't make Hagen any less great if he played against inferior competition. Tiger Woods is still great whether he plays against Koepka or me.

Was the depth of field that great from 1997-2002? Tiger said only he and Vijay worked on their physical health! Even so, with the strokes gained data from now into the future, It should be able to show how good Tiger was 100 years from now.

Edited by Slim_Pivot
added (FWIW) to avoid confusion, i agreed with Iacas assessment of peter thompson.

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