Thursday, July 30, 2009

Awesome headcovers!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Fade vs. Draw - which is longer off the tee?

As I learn more about how the swing works and how ball flight works (if you don't know what the d-plane is, google it or you don't know the real laws of ball flight), I'm starting to think that the idea that a draw is longer than a fade is a fallacy, especially with modern clubs.

With new equipment, we can offset the higher launch and spin (most useful on the driver) that traditionally cause a fade to be considered the "shorter" shot shape, and due to bio mechanics I believe that you can hit a fade harder than draw.

A pull fade, like Bubba's stock driver shot, is actually hit with a clubface CLOSED relative to the target line. That's why the ball starts left. The left to right spin is applied by club path that is going even further left of the target line than the clubface is pointing- or in other, out to in RELATIVE TO THE CLUBFACE.

Since the clubface can close through impact, I believe that contrary to traditional opinion, you can release HARDER hitting a fade than a draw. In order to hit a push draw (ball starting right of the target), the club face MUST be open- and therefore, in an otherwise neutral swing, slightly held off.

One of the Worst Articles I've Read in a While

And tastelessly executed to boot.

I would post the link, but the idea of feeding that man's article MORE TRAFFIC makes me a little nauseous. Suffice to say, it's an article on by Mike Freeman about Tom Watson- fuck it, here's the text too:

Tom Watson is a fine man who, at 59 years old -- more deadpan than bed pan -- almost captured perhaps the grandest golf major of them all and in his honor there will be no jokes about his age.

Except the only bag Watson carries these days isn't his golf bag, it's his colostomy bag.

Not saying that Watson is old but before his walk to the 18th hole he was asked for his AARP card.

The country long ago knew that Watson was going to be a good golfer when he beat Benjamin Franklin for a beaver pelt and oil lamp in a skins game.

Heck, couldn't resist.

• British Open coverage

We should all be thankful for Watson. To you, he's a gentleman, good sport and inspirational story. To me, he's a chance to once again beat a drum I've been pounding for years: Golf isn't a sport. The amount of athleticism required to play golf is about the same as it is to be a good bowler.

How else do you explain that a man who is nearly 60 came extremely close to winning a golf major?

This story might be inspirational but for the sport of golf it should also be mortifying. Actually, it's a tad embarrassing.

What does it say about a sport when it takes a playoff round to finally beat Watson despite Watson's age?

It says golf isn't a sport, that's what it says.

Thank you, Mr. Watson, for finally providing irrefutable proof.

There are no 59-year-old running backs, outfielders or point guards because the level of athleticism is so extreme in those sports that if someone Watson's age tried to play them they'd get broken into tiny pieces.

But there are 59-year-old bowlers, and bowling and golf are identical in the skill level required.

Golf is bowling, bowling is golf.

Football, basketball, baseball and hockey players aren't the only ones superior to golfers in their athletic ability. Auto racers, cyclists, rowers, marathoners, cricket players, rugby players, badminton players, WNBA players and anything in track and field are superior to golfers.

Golf and bowling are tied.

There are older professional athletes of course. The NHL's Chris Chelios is 47 and Dara Torres won three Olympic silver medals at 40. Yet there is still a tremendous difference between 40 and 59.

The general sporting public has been blinded on this subject by a bunch of media hogwash. There's a significant reason why they've been suckered. Golf has been gifted an elevated status because of its aristocratic heritage and this country's wealthy elite (including some of us in the media) help push the notion that golfers are athletes because it benefits the powerful. The sporting public then laps it all up because they're told to.

The argument that golf is a real sport is the result of a century-long campaign of focused casuistry over reasoned logic.

Golf has been provided the sports equivalent of affirmative action.

John Daly possesses the girth of a planetoid and the athletic ability of a drunken tortoise yet for a lengthy period he was one of golf's best players. Not much more proof is needed for golf's lack of athletic prowess than a flatulent Daly.

It has been stated golfers start out by playing other sports and then gravitate toward golf and that alleged fact is used as proof that golfers are truly athletes. My guess is if golfers do indeed begin their athletic lives playing other sports the majority end up in golf because they couldn't make it in other athletic arenas.

The next time people talk about Tiger Woods as one of the best athletes in the world, this British Open should be remembered, since Woods got beat by a 59-year-old man.

Please, calm yourselves, and let's be clear. These complaints aren't as much about Watson as it is the sport and the media. Is Watson a good story? Sure. Is Watson also an exemplary story? Yes, because he's proof of what people like me have been saying for years: golf is enjoyable but golf is also ... bowling.

The athleticism required to play golf is so minimal it's negligible.

Watson showed this unequivocally. Thank you, Tom.

Or should I call you grandpops?

By the way, we know bowlers are definitely tougher than golfers because bowlers carry their own bags.

Let me paraphrase: Tom Watson is a fine man (the actual first clause) who I'm about to insult with every tasteless comment about the elderly I can think of (the next 4 paragraphs or so), then say golf is like bowling without actually ever talking about either SPORT.

By his logic, if Dikembe Mutombo blocks a college kid's shot, basketball is not a sport.

Here's a few supporting facts:

He forges his credentials.

Apparently, he's a TERRIBLE golfer:

Michael Freeman, NJ

T Date Score CR/Slope Diff.
H 7/09 100 70.4/129 25.9
H 5/09 97 70.4/129 23.3
C 8/07 102 70.4/129 27.7
H 8/07 103 70.4/129 28.6
H 4/07 104 70.4/129 29.4

Of course it's not a sport, Mike. How could big strong man like you be bad at a sport? Clearly, the only logical conclusion is it must be one of them nerd things!

Friday, July 17, 2009


Forget the terrible shots, I've never seen Tiger walking around with his hands in his pockets, slouched over before.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Tiger Woods Invitational at Congressional

An exciting Sunday so far. It seems like AK is having trouble aiming left, which has happened a few times in the past 3 rounds too. Tiger is continuing to have occasional big misses with his driver, but also continues to hit beautiful, soft fades into a lot of pins.

AK's aim issue will be something he's gonna have to address next week on his off days. It's just a matter of retraining and a bit of focus, which I don't think will be much of a problem.

Tiger's problems might take a bit longer. It seems to be that when he's hitting fades with his irons he has a great, smooth lateral move through transition and impact. When he tries to hit draws, however, and especially with his driver/fairways, he seems to hang back, jump, and spin violently. I believe this is an attempt to stay behind the ball and release his right hand past his body to close the face- a rather difficult timing move.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Jordan Hill to my hometown Knicks

Looks like Blake Griffin lite to me. Not a bad pick, but they really do need a back up point (among many, many other changes). On the plus side, a conservative black chalk pinstripe with an understated paisley tie. Classy.

Terence Williams and Gerald Henderson are my instant impact picks, I think.

One Plane vs. Two Plane? Not quite.

Jim Hardy made a big impact with his one plane/two plane golf theory, but I (and others) believe that it is inaccurate. The difference between the two "types" of swings that I've seen are not based on whether or not the club is above the shoulder plane (a rather arbitrary line), but rather how the club is released through impact, and by extension, how the shoulders and hips rotate through impact.

The easiest way to see this distinction is to view the swing down the target line. At some point during the through swing, after impact, the club should be pointing roughly at the target. There are, however, two very different ways to accomplish this.

Below, at 0:17 is Tiger Woods "shaking hands with the target".

Compare to Anthony Kim, at 0:10.

Tiger has his right arm completely extended towards the target and away from his body on the follow through. Anthony Kim, in comparison, has already brought the club so far left and around his body (as opposed to up and away from his body) that it's already hidden from view by the time his right arm extends through to the target.

I believe in TGM (The Golfing Machine) terms, this is referred to as swinging on the TSP (turned shoulder plane) vs. the elbow plane through the impact area. For those who have an interest in what those mean, Brian Manzella's forums and Richie3jack's blog are good places to learn the basics.

This article has a great comparison of Ben Hogan and Tiger Woods from face on which shows the difference between the two "types" of swings.