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Why WGC's suck... or don't...

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Post by robopz Sun 09 Nov 2014, 8:18 pm

GBP... we can move our conversation here... I see no reason to "take it offline" because I'm really not worried about other people seeing it. If they think I'm FOS... I don't mind them chiming in.

Anybody else here think WGC's aren't prestigious events... or at the very least highly coveted by players well above "regular" events on either the PGA or Euro Tours?

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Post by robopz Sun 09 Nov 2014, 8:31 pm

Now back to the topic at hand...

GPB wrote:Re: Masters and WGC

IMO:  A big difference between the Masters and WGC's is the Masters pre-dates the OWGR.  Whether it was intentional or not, the WGC's exploit the top-heavy OWGR SoF formulas which were before the WGC's.  And that taints them.

Yes, under the current rating system (and just about any other possibly SoF rating system) the Masters and WGC are going to be rated nearly the same.  But the Masters has about 50 years of history longer than the OWGR.  The Masters invites have become more objective than it was 30 years ago.

For someone that does think WGC's and Majors are comparable, you sure do want to compare them.
I don't see any reason that the creation of the OWGR is somehow a benchmark in time in which events created after somehow are "tainted". Granted, I too have some issues with the OWGR, and many of those are the same as yours... but IMO the majors and other events that use the OWGR for at least partial field criteria have been ENHANCED because of the ranking system. Go back as recent as 1980 and look at fields for the U.S. Open and PGA... 15 total internationals players between them... 8 in one... 7 in the other. Thanks in large part to a world ranking system (flaws or no flaws)... they do a better job of getting the best in the world invited and playing. I think thats hard to dispute.

But moving on... we're talking TWO different things here in this WGC discussion... Field strengths and Prestige. Again.. there is NO question that the majors have far more prestige than majors. The only reason I have to continue to "disclaim" that is because you keep trying to "Hennie" me if I don't include it in almost every post.

But that said... one of your main points in dissing the WGC's has been field strength. And in that regard all I've done is point out that the WGC's (again with the disclaimer that the HSBC has yet to reach the status of the other 3), are very close in field strength to at least ONE of the most prestigious events on earth... the Masters.

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Post by McLaren Sun 09 Nov 2014, 9:46 pm

Would one reason for WGC's lacking a perceived prestige be the lack of coverage by general sports media as opposed to just the specialist golf section. When the majors come around the main sports outlets cover them as a main story, with the Masters and open getting even more special attention. This elevates these events in the public eye in a way the WGC's do not. I don't see there being room for more golf in general sports coverage as the public just don't care for it all that much.

Do non golf fans even know what a WGC is?

The media fan fare surrounding a sporting event is always likely to filter through to the general atmosphere that accompanies it.


One thing is for sure, the WGC's should in theory have some of the strongest fields in golf regardless of media attention or other points mentioned so far like guaranteed money and OWGR points.
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Post by robopz Sun 09 Nov 2014, 9:57 pm

GPB wrote:OK, The Hyperbolic Strawman has come out and joined the board.

A Cut Similar to the Masters cut would be my preference.  

For someone that gets all sanctimonious about replaying this argument  (Post on Friday Night at 6:07 pm CST) you sure do  want to keep picking the scab.

I had no intentions into getting into this discussion on this forum, but you scratched the scab so it started bleeding.  I even offered to take it offline on AOL this morning.  Your remarks early this morning were obviously directed at me (I ignored the ones from yesterday)

I respect your opinion on the WGC's, I don't agree with them ....why don't you respect my opinion.

Tell me something.  

Is a two horse race easier to win than a 5 horse race?

Is a 5 horse race easier to win than a 10 horse race?

etc. etc.

Assuming that you answer the lower amount... at one point does it change where a  "Y" horse race is easier to win than a "X" horse race.

Where "Y" is approximately twice as many as "X".

Just now heard Bubba's post round interview with Curt Byrum  and the first thing he said was important because it was a  win "outside the US".  The WGC comment was thrown at the end of interview....Sounds PC-ish.
OK...OK... I guess my smiley face wasn't enough...

The bottom line is... you keep going back to this which is easier to win argument apparanly assuming a given that more players make any event far harder to win. Now while I certainly agree that taking a field of 75... and adding 75 more makes it harder... just HOW much harder to win depends on who the original 75 are... and who the added 75 are. THAT's why I did the analysis on major winners since 2000... It showed that between 51 or 52 of the last 60 major winners likely would have been WGC eligible...

And that indicates to me the WGC's are doing about 85-87% as good a job as majors at assembling quality fields.... at LEAST as far as including the likely winners. Granted... 1 out of every 7 or 8 WGC's would likely be won by sombody other than the players eligible via the curent WGC criteria. But IMO that doesn't diminish them to the point they should be considered "no better than regular events". Far from it...

And the other point is.... it just DOESN'T always matter which events are harder to win than others when determining which are the most prestigious. And it's ALWAYS been that way, is now, and probably always will be. Go back to the 1960's & 70's... I can probalby point out 10-20 events every year on the PGAT that were more difficult to win than the OPEN Championship... but not a single one of them are considered more "prestigious" than the OPEN (at least today... but back then there were non-major events considered more prestigious than the OPEN, at least among the PGAT players and media in America).

So why you expect me accept some flawed "SOF" argument determines the prestige or importance the world of golf bestows on WGC's escapes me.

And as far as respecting your opinion... I'll admit that when it comes to your opinion on ANY topic that might even be tangenially associated to refect positively or negatively on Tiger Woods... I take ANYTHING you have to say on it with a grain of salt... The reason is because EVERY time you take the side that will reflect negatively. And not only that, but you do so with such fierce bias it's astonishing. That extends to any "honor" he has recieved such as Vardon's or POY's. And that diminshment extends to his regular wins, including WGC's and Memorials, and Bay Hills.. etc, which you've found myrids of ways to diminish.

The ONLY thing TW has ever accomplished you don't strain to diminish is his 14 majors. And the reason behind that is because 18 > 14... and somebody OTHER than Tiger has the 18. BUT... you've already prepared your argument in the off chance TW gets to 18 or more... that 2nd places finishes, or top-5s or some other measure of majors will be the "new" benchmark to determine greatness.

And over the year's.. I've seen your bias grow on the WGC's for exactly that reason's outlined above. When one point you make on WGC's is rebutted, you go to another... then another.. then another... until you have gotten yourself to the point i actually think you believe the world of golf sees the WGC's the same way you do... no more important than reguar events. And everytime I point out something counter to that argument, or a player expressing the pride in winning such a big or important event... or the media saying so, or the tours recognizing them as such... you write it off as "them being PC" or just dismissing those other sources it for some other reason.

I'll continue to agree there may be ways to improve them even further... and if you can convince me that enlarging the fields and/or instituting cuts will maintain the level of participation they get by top players... hey... I'm all ears. But while you've forwarded that argument...you've never supported it in any way that i can remember. But short of that... there's probably NOTHING that can be gained by us continuing to discuss this topic... because you're not changing your mind about the importance of WGC's until it looks like somebody can challenge TW's record in winning them... and I don't think the world of golf is gonna be changing their consensus that WGC's are prestigious big events anytime soon either... and I'm with them.

So perhaps it's best we leave it like we have... I'll ignore you probaby 9 out of the next 10 times you post something about what's wrong with WGC's... but sooner or later, I'll finally respond... and we can do this all over again..

It's become kinda like a "sport" of it's own...

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Post by robopz Sun 09 Nov 2014, 10:03 pm

McLaren wrote:Would one reason for WGC's lacking a perceived prestige be the lack of coverage by general sports media as opposed to just the specialist golf section.  When the majors come around the main sports outlets cover them as a main story, with the Masters and open getting even more special attention.  This elevates these events in the public eye in a way the WGC's do not.  I don't see there being room for more golf in general sports coverage as the public just don't care for it all that much.

Do non golf fans even know what a WGC is?  

The media fan fare surrounding a sporting event is always likely to filter through to the general atmosphere that accompanies it.


One thing is for sure, the WGC's should in theory have some of the strongest fields in golf regardless of media attention or other points mentioned so far like guaranteed money and OWGR points.  
Mac.. I think outside the golf world, golf has become so "major centric"... or "Tiger centric"... that outside of those two things (OK.. one a thing, one a person)...  not much else matters.  Oh sure some general populations or general sports fans in some countries might be following their Rory or Ryo or Ernie or whomever, but beyond that... not much.  

Golf is a niche sport... and i don't see anything that's gonna change that significantly in the near to mid term... but hey... it's OUR niche sport...

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Post by MustPuttBetter Sun 09 Nov 2014, 10:07 pm

I definitely find myself more interested in tuning into the coverage for a WGC than i do a regular tour event, because i know the field is going to be top notch and there are likely to be people i'm interested in near the top of the leaderboard than say....Scott Stallings (no offence Scott).
I'm more motivated to watch the majors for sure, but would certainly say the WGCs generate more interest, at least with me, than regular events
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Post by McLaren Sun 09 Nov 2014, 10:23 pm

Robo

Where I was going with my post is that if we assume it is true that WGC's are not a big deal then what causes that to be the case. It is not the guaranteed fee, as it is almost certain the best player that week wins. Does anyone really think there are players teeing it up at a WGC that could have won, if only the guaranteed cheque hadn't stopped them trying as hard as possible to win?

So if not factors such as that do we have to think about something a little less tangible like the hype surrounding an event?


Moving on to what is easier to win, again the current set up of WGC and major fields is not what effects this. To win a WGC or major you are going to have to beat roughly the same strength of field. It pains me to bring in another woolly argument but is the difference in difficulty of winning between a major and WGC the pressure the players apply on themselves to win each respectively?

Again we come back to prestige and history, those being the reasons the majors are valued by those trying to win them. But again would introducing a cut to WGC's really change this?
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Post by robopz Sun 09 Nov 2014, 11:58 pm

McLaren wrote:Robo

Where I was going with my post is that if we assume it is true that WGC's are not a big deal then what causes that to be the case.  It is not the guaranteed fee, as it is almost certain the best player that week wins.  Does anyone really think there are players teeing it up at a WGC that could have won, if only the guaranteed cheque hadn't stopped them trying as hard as possible to win?

So if not factors such as that do we have to think about something a little less tangible like the hype surrounding an event?


Moving on to what is easier to win, again the current set up of WGC and major fields is not what effects this.  To win a WGC or major you are going to have to beat roughly the same strength of field.  It pains me to bring in another woolly argument but is the difference in difficulty of winning between a major and WGC the pressure the players apply on themselves to win each respectively?

Again we come back to prestige and history, those being the reasons the majors are valued by those trying to win them.  But again would introducing a cut to WGC's really change this?


Mac... it's always been my contention the WGCs get the participation they get not for the relatively paltry guarantees at the bottom end of the leaderboard... but the potential for incredible riches at the top end.  Tiger or Phil or Rory could give a rats behind about the minimums or guarantees... they're eyes are on the big prize. But there's probably 25 players in the top-50 that still think $40k guaranteed last place is more than pocket change...

And as far as easier to win.. well yes, I DO think it is easier to win WGC's than majors... because while they are similar in the TOP end of players, the majors for the most part have a lot deeper fields beyond those top end players.  And the data from the last 60 majors seems to suggest that about 13-15% of the time, a player who wouldn't be WGC eligible, wins a major. That's 8 or 9 times out of 60.. Think Michael Campbell, Curtis, Micheel, Glover, Yang and Clarke for instance.  

But the question here is PRESTIGE and importance, not if they are the toughest fields that can be assembled.  What makes them important and revered is simply because the top players embrace them and show up to play... because THEY think they're important.  Now I have NO doubt that the $9 million purses, and guarantees is the reason a lot of them show up. But its not the WHY they show up that makes them important... it's the fact they mostly all do.  

And speaking of pressure... What was it Azinger said one time "Only two things ever made me choke, and that was prestige and money". I think there's a lot of truth to that. Compared to majors, the prestige part of Azinger's formula is probably only 1/2 to 3/4's met,  but the 2nd part, the money, is close to the same. In fact unless the Masters, U.S. Open and Open raise their purses in 2015... the 3 WGC's played in the states will be slightly more purse than any of them ($9.25 mil for Doral, Match Play & Bridgestone, compared to $9 mil for the Masters & U.S. Open, $9.2 est for the Open (depending on currency fluctuations.)

And there's one other thing that hasn't been brought up in this current round of WGC discussion. We're smack in the middle of WORLD golf now. WGC's are important because without them we'd have only 5 opportunities instead of 9 to assemble the worlds best players in one place. And for that reason I think WGC's are growing in importance all the time.  I doubt WGC's would EVER move up to the level of prestige as majors... but for "the rest of the world that aren't PGA members"... they're the next biggest thing and I'd bet are viewed closer to majors in prestige than probably even Americans or Europeans perceive them to be.

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Post by McLaren Mon 10 Nov 2014, 12:36 am

Robo

Apologies if this derails the thread, as it is a little early to mention tiger in the discussion but one way to measure what prestige WGC's hold might be to ask what does tiger having 18 WGC wins mean?

You have to think it is a pretty significant achievement to beat that field strength so often, yet I don't think the world of golf really cares about it.
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Post by robopz Mon 10 Nov 2014, 2:29 am

McLaren wrote:Robo

Apologies if this derails the thread, as it is a little early to mention tiger in the discussion but one way to measure what prestige WGC's hold might be to ask what does tiger having 18 WGC wins mean?

You have to think it is a pretty significant achievement to beat that field strength so often, yet I don't think the world of golf really cares about it.
Actually i think the world of golf does think highly of it, but he's won so many compared to anybody else, it's just hard for a lot of folks to really wrap their heads around it. Human nature i guess... I mean it's so easy to think, "Well if he wins WGC's that often it can't be THAT hard can it?". But then when you apply a little logic and ask... "But why are they so easy for him, but not so easy for anybody else?"... it gets more interesting. I mean I GET the horses for courses train of thought (Bridgestone for example)... but still, these are absolute CHALK fields, and it seems hard to imagine WGC courses wouldn't favor some other of the best of the world a little more often as well.

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Post by McLaren Mon 10 Nov 2014, 10:05 am

Myabe I need to expand my horizons beyond this site when it comes to golf opinions, but I am pretty sure most people on here (especially kwini Wink ) do not see tigers WGC record as anything special.


robo wrote:We're smack in the middle of WORLD golf now

I get that you are saying that golf is being played all over the place at the moment, but to concentrate on the world portion of the WGC title, some people (sorry kwini agian Hug ) would argue the WGC;s don't focus on the word bit enough. I don't mind that they are in the US as it offers great viewing times here in the UK and a strong field is a strong field no matter where the event is held.
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Post by navyblueshorts Mon 10 Nov 2014, 11:44 am

I'd think a lot more of them if there was a cut tbh. I'm not that bothered about them really. Four acknowledge Majors per year is about enough.
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Post by McLaren Mon 10 Nov 2014, 11:57 am

Navy

what about having a cut would make you think more about the WGC's?
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Post by kwinigolfer Mon 10 Nov 2014, 1:33 pm

Hi Mac,
It's not just playing the WGC's predominantly in the States that bugs me, it's that they're at the same old courses, and not the best ones either.
I would look much more favourably at Tiger's WGC record if they were on a variety of strong courses. He's been the best player of the post-Nicklaus generation by a country mile, but playing Firestone & Doral for so many of those wins doesn't embellish his record, almost diminishes it.

As for the "cut"; the only thing they have wrong in my eyes is to award owgr points and official money to participants who play poorly. Nothing meritorious about that, but Westwood, for instance, would have won well over $1M just for teeing it up at all those (45?) WGC's that he's played, just for coming last. That can't be right.

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Post by navyblueshorts Mon 10 Nov 2014, 1:39 pm

McLaren wrote:Navy

what about having a cut would make you think more about the WGC's?
To me, they're just exhibitions for the already wealthy of the golfing world. Maybe it's more that than actually having a cut. I think, for the majority, it's just a 'turn-up-and-guaranteed-money' jaunt. I wonder what appearance fees are paid?
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Post by McLaren Mon 10 Nov 2014, 1:59 pm

Kwini

If a tournament repeatedly using the same course negates that event as a measure of performance the all time major list starts to look a lot worse for some players;

Jack Nicklaus 12
Tiger Woods 10
Ben Hogan 7
Gary Player 6
Tom Watson 6
Lee Trevino 6
Peter Thomson 5
Ernie Els 4
Rory McIlroy 4
Arnold Palmer 3
Nick Faldo 3
Seve Ballesteros 3
Raymond Floyd 3
Phil Mickelson 2

(keeping it modern)


navy

What other than a cut would increase the prestige you attribute to the WGC's?
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Post by kwinigolfer Mon 10 Nov 2014, 2:16 pm

Mac,
Out of context of course! I think even you would acknowledge that Augusta National, for all its issues, is nevertheless a Championship Course to an extent that neither Doral or Firestone are.
Cream still at the top of your Major list regardless.

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Post by McLaren Mon 10 Nov 2014, 2:46 pm

By some peoples reckoning I imagine Firestone is the perfect incarnation of the ideal championship course.

Are you not just making a case of special pleading for AGNC? If not, help me understand why not?
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Post by navyblueshorts Mon 10 Nov 2014, 3:25 pm

McLaren wrote:...navy

What other than a cut would increase the prestige you attribute to the WGC's?
Dunno Mac. I'm just not bothered by them. Do the players base their seasons around trying to win WGCs? Not convinced. To me, they're just another Tour event - nothing special at all. Last one was in Shanghai; who cares?
As I said before, four Majors per year is enough - any more and I suspect people would start to question what 'Major' means.
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Post by McLaren Mon 10 Nov 2014, 3:42 pm

Navy

I agree that the WGC's will never surpass the majors in terms of public and media attention, and therefore player priority, but do you not value them as a way for players to test themselves against a high field strength?
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Post by robopz Mon 10 Nov 2014, 9:53 pm

Sorry... got busy... but to catch up on some things from above...

As for as the WGC's being worldly... In a perfect world... I'd prefer they move two of the current U.S. WGC's to other parts of the world... but ONLY if they're moved or scheduled in a way they would likely gain the same participation levels as they do now. IMO the most important aspect of "worldness" about them is that the top players from all corners of the world actually participate in them... and the WHERE they need to be to accomplish that is secondary.

As for Cuts or Minimum point/money in WGC's - In the same vein as above... what I like about the WGC's is the fact they DO entice the vast majority of top-ranked players to participate (or at least 3 of them do and I think the HSBC is building to where it will be true there soon as well).  So THAT's the objective.   Now beyond that, I could care less if they have minimum points/money  or larger fields with cuts, or same size fields with cuts or many changes I've seen suggested for them.... but ONLY AS LONG as they continue to attract the Top players like they do now.  So when I debate should they have cuts or minimums... its ONLY in the context of keeping the participation level up.  When the WGC's started, I believe absolutely the minimums were necessary to get everybody to show up and for the most part... i still do.  

Tiger and Firestone... I just don't see how winning on one course often can in any way be considered as something to diminish wins... but in Tiger's case i know it happens.  I think it's just a matter of either people tired of seeing Tiger win the damn thing so often and/or they think somehow Firestone has some mystical double secret something going on that favors only him.   But with TW and WGC's... it isn't just the course methinks... Yeah... I get that he's won the WGC "Invitational" 8 times on Firestone, but people seem to forget he's also won the WGC "Championship" 7 times... but on 6 different courses... the only double is Doral.   Seems to me the only formula for WGC course selection that would make some people happy is "anywhere Tiger hasn't performed well or is likely to perform well".  Woo hoo... Riviera here we come... :-)

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Post by pedro Mon 10 Nov 2014, 10:22 pm

Few will argue that the WGCs are as prestigeous as the Majors. But besides the Majors they are the only tournaments where the best players from all tours around the world compete together without a clear bias towards a particular tour.

The PLAYERS for instance is a US PGA Tour tournament and is therefore biased towards the US PGA Tour.

Now I don't argue against that the best players - currently - play on the PGA Tour, but that's not the point.

Nor do I argue that many players don't rate other tournaments higher, either on the US PGA Tour or any other tour for that matter.

The WGC's are just, as the name implies, international tournaments with participations from most other tours and with no clear bias towards a particular tour as such. Therefore, objectively, it should be rated highly.

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Post by kwinigolfer Mon 10 Nov 2014, 10:24 pm

Curious thing with Tiger's success in Akron is that Firestone fits the profile of courses one would expect him to struggle on . . . . . .

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Post by robopz Mon 10 Nov 2014, 11:12 pm

kwinigolfer wrote:Curious thing with Tiger's success in Akron is that Firestone fits the profile of courses one would expect him to struggle on . . . . . .
I'm glad you posted that.  I actually had it in my post but deleted before hitting send because I think too many people think I'm all about "pandering" to TW even though the truth of the matter is I don't care WHO it is, but any one person winning 18 of these things is just hard to fathom.

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Post by robopz Mon 10 Nov 2014, 11:31 pm

navyblueshorts wrote:To me, they're just exhibitions for the already wealthy of the golfing world. Maybe it's more that than actually having a cut. I think, for the majority, it's just a 'turn-up-and-guaranteed-money' jaunt. I wonder what appearance fees are paid?
I would have been more inclined to agree with that more when they first started... but not so much any more, especially for the international dual tour players.  The fact of the matter is the 8 big co-sanctioned events (+the Players) have become the primary path for top ranked foreign non-members to get on the PGA Tour via Special Temporary Membership... and the 8 co-sanctions have become the key events that actually helps them keep dual Tour status.

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Post by navyblueshorts Tue 11 Nov 2014, 1:03 pm

McLaren wrote:Navy

I agree that the WGC's will never surpass the majors in terms of public and media attention, and therefore player priority, but do you not value them as a way for players to test themselves against a high field strength?
Maybe. I'm just not convinced the players (at least a significant number of them) are doing much more than phone it in. Probably just me. The paycheck to the winner is undoubtedly a draw but I don't suppose the big name companies are queuing up to endorse someone just for winning a WGC. I bet they're doing just that for a Major winner though. The players also know it'll go down in the record books if they win a Major so they're giving it everything; a WGC? Nah.
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Post by McLaren Tue 11 Nov 2014, 1:33 pm

Navy

I think we all accept the WGC's are a level below the majors, but still some of the strongest fields in golf.


The way you describe your opinion of them makes me think that you assume players don't even value a WGC as highly as a regular tour event?


robo

I agree with you about WGC's being crucial to double dippers and those seeking PGA tour membership. This would further strengthen my belief that WGC's mean something to the players, especially those from Europe.
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Post by navyblueshorts Tue 11 Nov 2014, 1:40 pm

McLaren wrote:...The way you describe your opinion of them makes me think that you assume players don't even value a WGC as highly as a regular tour event?...
Nah. I'm sure they value them similarly, some probably more. I guess I don't think they were a worthwhile addition to the golfing calendar in the first place.
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Post by kwinigolfer Tue 11 Nov 2014, 1:46 pm

Concept great.
Implementation poor!
As in so many things I suppose.

I DO think they've been good for European golfers.
But not for the European Tour.

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Post by robopz Wed 12 Nov 2014, 4:48 pm

kwinigolfer wrote:I DO think they've been good for European golfers.
But not for the European Tour.
Couldn't agree with you more on that one.

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Post by GPB Wed 12 Nov 2014, 7:03 pm

"Why WGCs Suck..."

ROBOPZ, it phrases like this that make me think you are NOT Understanding my position on WGCs.  You can crawfish all you want about that you are just being sarcastic or it has a smiley face attached to it but the fact is you are taking my comments out of context

The fact is that I have never said WGC's Suck.  I like the tournaments, I watch them, just like I watch any golf tournament during the year.  

I have just said that they are over-rated.  And I base this opinion (and yes it is an opinion not shared by all) that they are not full field events.

I happen to think full field events are harder to win than events with 4 players (like the Grand Slam of Golf that was held last month).

OK, admittedly thats Reductio ad Absurdum.  But it does illustrate a point...if you will indulge me.

IMO, the difficulty of winning golf tournaments is a depending on the "talent" and "number of golfers" and I think you would agree with me.

But....I am not at all convinced that the talent from Players ranked #20-#50 is all that much greater than the talent of players from #51-300.  There are far too many PGAT tournaments being won by players ranked in this OWGR range.

And yes it is precisely why you think it is.  Because it is sheer number of opportunities.  These win the Honda Classics and Wells Fargos and Sony Opens because they represent 85% of the field.

Any talent advantage that WGC's might have with their elite field is offset by the sheer number of PGATour caliber players that play the Honda Classic.

A good way to ensure a top 50 player will win a WGC event is to invite only top 50 players.  I can bet my mortgage that someone from the top 50 is going to win the World Challenge next month and someone from the top 15 was going to win the PGA Grand Slam last month.

========================

Yes, you are going to claim it is my anti-Tiger bias that makes me "denigrate" the WGCs?

Let me ask you something, do you think my WGC argument is consistent with my many comments from the last year regarding Webbie accessibility?  

IMO, my comments on both issues parallel each other.  An Equal playing field.  I want a more level playing field for webbies to compete against Top 125 players.  And I want a more level playing field for journeyman players against the World Class elite players.

There is no denying that WGC's help (but not guarantee) top 50 players stay ranked in the top 50.  If players out of the top 50 cannot play these (highly rated by OWGR) tournaments, then it makes it harder for them to penetrate the top 50.  

Lets examine Poulters ranking a little more closely.  He has 138.44 net points, and 34.19 of those net points are from the HSBC tournament (this year and last year).  That is 25% of his ranking.  Without those two tournaments in his resume, his average is 2.26 and he would be ranked about 60th.  (I did adjust his advisor).

Thanks to that tournament, he has virtually clinched a spot in the top 50 at year end and a Masters invite.  Chances are good that someone is not going to get that Masters invite for next April thanks because Poulter was able to exploit his WSBC appearance.  Thats not a level playing field.

Maybe you are not bothered by that.  I am.  Many pundits claim that golf is sport that most truly represents a meritocracy.  No guarantees etc.  Sure at first glance it is. But the devil is in the details.

And once again, I don't think WGC's Suck.  I like watching them.  But I think they are over-rated.  I am not drinking the kool-aid that they are 2nd only to the majors.  The OWGR over-values them because of their top heavy SoF formula

In part, I think players play in the WGC because playing in them is a competitive advantage.  Whats not to like?  $50K just for playing, Fedex points just for showing up, and about a 15% chance of finishing in the top 10 and getting non-trivial OWGR ranking points.

There is only a few tournaments each year that award more ranking points per entrants.  The WC, Nedbank, Tour Championship, and maybe the World Match Play and possibly the Masters (depending on how many make the cut).

and one more time, I don't WGC's don't suck, I think they are overrated.  

Capisce?

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Post by Shotrock Wed 12 Nov 2014, 7:22 pm

WGC events are clearly made for TV events. Limited field, no cut, guarantee to get all the top players who participate in that particular tournament at least some TV time. Seems to be simply a natural progression of top professional sports marketing. Fans will vote with their eyeballs and, of course, they are.

As far as Tiger (or any golfer) winning more events at the likes of Firestone ... no diminishment in my eyes. Tiger clearly does not possess any single shot others don't. He has simply performed better. No doubt due to his level of concentration and fortitude in those events. Rory seems to be doing that plenty now.

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Post by super_realist Wed 12 Nov 2014, 7:39 pm

I'm loving 9C's continued absence, it's almost as if the golf world has moved on.

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Post by kwinigolfer Wed 12 Nov 2014, 7:46 pm

He'll be back soon super_, at his very own "made for TV event", in his old Islesworth manor, another "World" event!

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Post by McLaren Wed 12 Nov 2014, 7:47 pm

GPB

If the format of the WGC's were as follows;

All players (say worlds top 500) have a chance to qualify for the final during a set of qualification tournaments.

Then the top 50 from the qualification tournaments play in a 72 hole limited field no cut final.

Would you be ok with WGC's if that were the system?
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Post by super_realist Wed 12 Nov 2014, 7:51 pm

kwinigolfer wrote:He'll be back soon super_, at his very own "made for TV event", in his old Islesworth manor, another "World" event!

His fragile body won't last long Kwini.

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Post by GPB Wed 12 Nov 2014, 8:28 pm

McLaren wrote:GPB

If the format of the WGC's were as follows;

All players (say worlds top 500) have a chance to qualify for the final during a set of qualification tournaments.

Then the top 50 from the qualification tournaments play in a 72 hole limited field no cut final.

Would you be ok with WGC's if that were the system?

You would have to provide more detail for me to give an opinion. "Limited field" is a Red Flag. From what you are saying, it sounds pretty much like what is happening now. I don't like to see a player mail it in (ahem Billy Horschel) and still get $50K of official money.

As I said, they don't suck, they just over-rated. Part of my criticisms is due to the OWGR top heavy rating system and WGC fields exploit it. A total of ~390 points was given out to the field of 80 players. This is almost 5 points per player.

The PGA Championship (arguably the strongest field in golf) got a total of 594 points, 3.81 points per player.

Tiger's World Challenge gives out 10 points per player!!!


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Post by McLaren Wed 12 Nov 2014, 8:36 pm

So you would prefer to see a similar qualifying section but allow 120 into the final 72 holes and have a cut in the final?

I just don't see how that changes the winner compared to my system (which i purposefully chose to resemble the actual scenario).
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Post by GPB Wed 12 Nov 2014, 8:56 pm

McLaren wrote:So you would prefer to see a similar qualifying section but allow 120 into the final 72 holes and have a cut in the final?

I just don't see how that changes the winner compared to my system (which i purposefully chose to resemble the actual scenario).

How it changes the winner? Because one of those 50 guys that just got into the tournament might win. Ever hear YE Yang? Lucas Glover? Darren Clarke? Louis Oosthuizen?

These guys have won Majors when they would not ordinarily be qualified to WGCs at the time they played their major. All in the last six years.

There is a reason why players outside the top 50 do not win WGCs.

Its the same reason why players ranked inside the top 50 do not win tournaments like Sanderson Farms and the King Hassan Deux tournaments

Because you can't win what you don't play.

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Post by robopz Wed 12 Nov 2014, 10:49 pm

GPB wrote:"Why WGCs Suck..."

ROBOPZ, it phrases like this that make me think you are NOT Understanding my position on WGCs.  You can crawfish all you want about that you are just being sarcastic or it has a smiley face attached to it but the fact is you are taking my comments out of context

The fact is that I have never said WGC's Suck.  I like the tournaments, I watch them, just like I watch any golf tournament during the year.  

I have just said that they are over-rated.  And I base this opinion (and yes it is an opinion not shared by all) that they are not full field events.

I happen to think full field events are harder to win than events with 4 players (like the Grand Slam of Golf that was held last month).

OK, admittedly thats Reductio ad Absurdum.  But it does illustrate a point...if you will indulge me.

IMO, the difficulty of winning golf tournaments is a depending on the "talent" and "number of golfers" and I think you would agree with me.

But....I am not at all convinced that the talent from Players ranked #20-#50 is all that much greater than the talent of players from #51-300.  There are far too many PGAT tournaments being won by players ranked in this OWGR range.

And yes it is precisely why you think it is.  Because it is sheer number of opportunities.  These win the Honda Classics and Wells Fargos and Sony Opens because they represent 85% of the field.

Any talent advantage that WGC's might have with their elite field is offset by the sheer number of PGATour caliber players that play the Honda Classic.

A good way to ensure a top 50 player will win a WGC event is to invite only top 50 players.  I can bet my mortgage that someone from the top 50 is going to win the World Challenge next month and someone from the top 15 was going to win the PGA Grand Slam last month.

GPB... but I DO get your point... I've agreed with you time and time and time again that it's NO question if you could supplement the current WGC fields with another 20, 40, 50 or whatever number of players... they would be even BETTER and harder to win.

But I think the part you are missing in the above is one of the key reasons somebody else other than a "WGC eligible" player wins so many other events is because all the "WGC eligible" players aren't in them (and you seem to be stuck on some notion that only 50 players play in WGC's)

If we go back 15 years... and using today standards for the WGC's... we find that only 9 times out of 60 (or 15% of the time) has a "non WGC eligible" player won a major. Then if we add the Players to that... it becomes 12 out of 75 (16%). So like I've acknowledged MANY, MANY times... if you expanded the WGC's to have "major like" fields... then some other player would win about 1 out of 7.

But my point on the makeup of the WGC fields and guarantees, cuts and whatever has always been the same... I VALUE the WGC's because they actually DO get the top players to participate. On the face of it, I don't object to adding cuts or removing guarantees UNLESS I feel that it will ultimately affect the WGC's ability to attract the top players. And IMO if you start removing those "perks"... you DO start chipping away at the participation rate. And before you know it... you have events just like the ToC or Volvo Match Play that can't attract the top players despite their full field guarantees which are FAR easier to win than WGC's.

GPB wrote:
Yes, you are going to claim it is my anti-Tiger bias that makes me "denigrate" the WGCs?
Let me ask you something, do you think my WGC argument is consistent with my many comments from the last year regarding Webbie accessibility?

IMO, my comments on both issues parallel each other.  An Equal playing field.  I want a more level playing field for webbies to compete against Top 125 players.  And I want a more level playing field for journeyman players against the World Class elite players.


Yes... Absolutely IMO the big reason you got started denigrating the WGCs was because TW has won so many of them...  and sorry, but at this stage it's going to be near impossible to convince me otherwise. You've denigrated WGC's for so long now and in so many ways you might have even forgotten what got you started in on them.. but i haven't. And if it wasn't a case of you having denigrated virtually everything TW has ever accomplished (other than majors) in some way or another, I might could be convinced there could be an objective conversation with you on this topic... but there isn't.

See my comments later... but there IS no equal playing field and there is NO true meritocracy in golf... never has been... never will be. But I agree with your general position on the Webbies, but i think bringing them into this conversation is about 98% out in left field.

GPB wrote:
There is no denying that WGC's help (but not guarantee) top 50 players stay ranked in the top 50.  If players out of the top 50 cannot play these (highly rated by OWGR) tournaments, then it makes it harder for them to penetrate the top 50.  

Lets examine Poulters ranking a little more closely.  He has 138.44 net points, and 34.19 of those net points are from the HSBC tournament (this year and last year).  That is 25% of his ranking.  Without those two tournaments in his resume, his average is 2.26 and he would be ranked about 60th.  (I did adjust his advisor).

Thanks to that tournament, he has virtually clinched a spot in the top 50 at year end and a Masters invite.  Chances are good that someone is not going to get that Masters invite for next April thanks because Poulter was able to exploit his WSBC appearance.  Thats not a level playing field.

Maybe you are not bothered by that.  I am.  Many pundits claim that golf is sport that most truly represents a meritocracy.  No guarantees etc.  Sure at first glance it is. But the devil is in the details.

And as for Poulter's or anybody else's ranking right around 50... Look... I GET IT... OK. I think you're making WAY too big a deal over it... but I get it. Bottom line is EVERYBODY who just barely qualifies to get into some major can probably point to some tournament that got them there. If Poulter remains in the top-50 at year end and thus gets into the Masters because of his play in the HSBC.. I say GREAT. First he earned his way into the WGC in the first place and then he finished 6th when he got there... whats wrong with that?

And I don't buy that WGC's have too much influence in keeping a guy in the top-50. We've discussed this before and the various WGC's are showing between 33-40% turnover from year to year IIRC.... And the reason is the WGC's are only a huge boost to get you continually qualified for more WGC's if you play well in them. Let's get back to Poulter again... in the other 3 WGC's combined he played poorly and earned just over 4 points total.... and 4 points divided by 3 events is 1.4... even undepreciated that equates to about a #125 ranking... hardly enough to qualify for big events next time around.

And as far as "Many pundits claim that golf is sport that most truly represents a meritocracy. No guarantees etc." I've never seen that... what I've seen said is golf is MORE of a meritocracy than most other sports... to which I still say yes and no. But let's face it, the day somebody decided that winning some event or somebody achieving a certain placing on a money list gets you exempt for a year or years... or somebody offered the first "sponsors exemption"... then golf CEASED being a true meritocracy. Now it still is a meritocracy in that if Joe Blow gets into the top-50 this year and qualifies for all the WGC's that's fine and good, but if he falls out of the top-50 (and other criteria) he doesn't get in. [/quote]

GPB wrote:And once again, I don't think WGC's Suck.  I like watching them.  But I think they are over-rated.  I am not drinking the kool-aid that they are 2nd only to the majors.  The OWGR over-values them because of their top heavy SoF formula

In part, I think players play in the WGC because playing in them is a competitive advantage.  Whats not to like?  $50K just for playing, Fedex points just for showing up, and about a 15% chance of finishing in the top 10 and getting non-trivial OWGR ranking points.

There is only a few tournaments each year that award more ranking points per entrants.  The WC, Nedbank, Tour Championship, and maybe the World Match Play and possibly the Masters (depending on how many make the cut).

and one more time, I don't WGC's don't suck, I think they are overrated.  

Capisce?

Bottom line... IMO the WGC's are a cut above the "regular events" and except for a handful of other regular events worldwide, WAY above. And the players and media and the most the rest of the world of golf seem to agree. And I agree not because they say so... but because I think they are right. Prestige or importance of events is NOT determined by strength of field alone... there are OTHER factors... So we can go on and on about the Poulter's or the top-heaviness of the OWGR, or any of the other spreadsheet minutiae all we want... but it's not going to change the BIGGEST factor in that makes them big events... the players embrace them as such... period. And I don't care what ALL the motivations are for them to show up... it's enough that they do. And in comment after comment from the players they feel there is something "extra" special about beating the best of the best... and WGC wins represent to them success in doing just that.

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Post by McLaren Wed 12 Nov 2014, 11:08 pm

Despite individuals disagreeing about how much prestige the WGC's deserve there seems to be a rough consensus that they could do to expand the field to at least top 100 or so.  

If this were to happen does anyone have any idea of who could make the changes and what groups could put up opposition to this happening?
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Post by GPB Wed 12 Nov 2014, 11:26 pm

They "Embrace" them! LMAO.

I would embrace them also if I got paid $50,000 to shoot 75-74-78-73.

Its the chicken or the egg. Tiger has not played HSBC in years, Phil has not played the Matchplay in years. 40% of the top 20 skipped the HSBC this year.

Sorry Robo, still drinking the WGC flavor kool-aid. WGC are not special. Not every I take a position it is because of my dislike of Tiger Woods.

Sure there is turnover in the top 50. Never said there wasn't. But there would be more turnover without WGC's and other limited field events.

If the players are truly World Class elite top 50 players, they do not need a Gov't check, Food Stamps and monthly stop to shop at local gospel mission to stay in the top 50.

And they are still not going to Disrespect the wGC by saying they are Financed their Mercedes at Barclays that is on Michelin Tires.

I don't why you are trying so hard to convince me. Do you really think you are change my mind?

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Post by robopz Thu 13 Nov 2014, 12:17 am

GPB wrote:They "Embrace" them!  LMAO.

I would embrace them also if I got paid $50,000 to shoot 75-74-78-73.

Its the chicken or the egg.  Tiger has not played HSBC in years, Phil has not played the Matchplay in years.  40% of the top 20 skipped the HSBC this year.
Wow... last place is $50k now in the stroke play WGCs? Hey... if everybody knew that maybe more players would show up at the HSBC.

And so sorry for not including my usual disclaimer in my last post about how the HSBC hasn't yet reached the universal stature and acceptance of the other three WGC's.... I thought we were past that in this conversation that I needed to repeat it every stinking time.  But since we're apparently not or you're having trouble retaining that information, I guess I'll just have to start adding them again.... please see the end of this post.  

GPB wrote:Sorry Robo, still drinking the WGC flavor kool-aid.  WGC are not special.  Not every I take a position it is because of my dislike of Tiger Woods.
My bad if I've left the impression I believe every position you take is because of your dislike of Tiger Woods.... for instance I've never sensed your comments on tee time intervals or maple syrup has anything to do with him.  And by the way... the cherry Kool-Aid goes better with vodka... the lime goes better with Gin.

GPB wrote:Sure there is turnover in the top 50.  Never said there wasn't.  But there would be more turnover without WGC's and other limited field events.
If the players are truly World Class elite top 50 players, they do not need a Gov't check, Food Stamps and monthly stop to shop at local gospel mission to stay in the top 50.

And they are still not going to Disrespect the wGC by saying they are Financed their Mercedes at Barclays that is on Michelin Tires.
I'm not sure there would be more turnover in the top-50 without the WGC's. Could be instead of those lower top-50 guys coming in and getting their butts kicked by those higher ranked players... they might actually earn more points in some other event where they had a better chance to compete.  

And on the other... it really doesn't bother me what anybody uses their Govt checks or food stamps for... as long as it's not for alcohol, tobacco, lobster.... or Benleys.  

GPB wrote:I don't why you are trying so hard to convince me.  Do you really think you are change my mind?  
Did it ever occur to you that perhaps YOU are not the one I'm trying to convince?  My aim on continuing this discussion here is in the hopes that some of the objective readers of these comments might consider my points. But don't think for a second that I believe you ever will... because I know  you can NEVER, EVER, EVER do so on this topic.

DISCLAIMER: Nothing in the above comments should be construed to indicate I believe WGCs are anywhere near the same level of prestige as majors. Furthermore it should be understood that my comments about the participation rates of top-players in WGC's are generally aimed at the three WGC's played in the U.S. at this time. However, the HSBC has not quite yet reached the level of acceptance and/or participation of the other three. (even though i believe the HSBC continues to improve.)  

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Post by kwinigolfer Thu 13 Nov 2014, 3:47 am

Hey, you guys be careful about what you say about maple syrup . . . . . think I wrote on here before about the unnatural positions squirrels assume on the branches of my sugar maples when the late February sun causes sap to flow prematurely, and turns into sapicicles if the little nutkins haven't licked it all up! It's their Major, after all.

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Post by incontinentia Thu 13 Nov 2014, 8:51 am

I never thought too deeply about WGC's. I think they are prestigious, but I'm a casual golf fan and may not know the full picture. From the way the players talk about tournaments it pretty obvious Majors are number 1 in terms of prestige (duh!), then there is a significant drop in prestige until you get to the Players Championship, then there is a little drop to the WGC's, then another significant drop to regular tour events.

If I was to illustrate my take on things, the hierarchy would look like this:
________________________________________________________
Majors


Players Championship
WGC's


Regular Tour events
__________________________________________________________

Whenever players on the top 50 bubble talk to the media, they invariably say "yeah it be nice to get inside the top 50, guarantee my place in the Majors and world golf championships". at least most I've heard have tacked on that bit about the WGC's.

Perhaps the reason the HSBC is less prestigious is because of its location? I don't blame many of the top american players for needing a damn good reason to travel to the other side of the world to play a golf tournament.

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed above may or may not be relevant to the discussion at hand. The author is not familiar with OWGR permutations or the algorithms used to calculate them. Terms and conditions apply. May cause drowsiness.
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Post by Roller_Coaster Thu 13 Nov 2014, 9:45 am

Disclaimer: My opinions don't really count as I have to take my viewed golf through the medium of the BBC alone.

Datclaimer: At least there is an argument of length that doesn't involve Mac/Super alone

Deotherclaimer: My post is mainly to use the (admittedly very poor) "Dis", "Dat" and "Deother" gag

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Post by GPB Thu 13 Nov 2014, 5:08 pm

Robo: My comments about the HSBC needing a cut (for one tee tee-times) pinged your radar so hard that you came into the discussion with both guns ablazin'

I had no intention of bringing this debate to this board.

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Post by robopz Thu 13 Nov 2014, 5:13 pm

GPB wrote:
robopz wrote:
GPB wrote:I know Day's win in the Matchplay sucks....right Robo?  Very Happy
Absolutely... I mean how can anybody consider a WGC win prestigious when Troy Merritt isn't even in the field... pffffft..... Whistle

Mark Wilson has more PGATour wins than two of the top Nine golfers combined.  (and those two have been full time PGATour member for 5 years).

Awesome example of how what you accomplished a few years ago might continue to exempt you for years and years into "regular events", but it sure don't get you into the elite WGC's...

robopz

Posts : 3597
Join date : 2012-04-23
Location : Texas

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Why WGC's suck... or don't...  Empty Re: Why WGC's suck... or don't...

Post by robopz Thu 13 Nov 2014, 5:21 pm

GPB wrote:Robo:  My comments about the HSBC needing a cut (for one tee tee-times) pinged your radar so hard that you came into the discussion with both guns ablazin'

I had no intention of bringing this debate to this board.
Um... excuse me... All I did was make a simple one sentence reply to a topic YOU re-initiated... and ONLY on the cut topic...  In case you forgot... this was your comment and my reply...
robopz wrote:
GPB wrote:I would like to see a cut at the HSBC to make the tournament field a little more manageable,.  If they cut down to 50, they could go with tee times all of the Tee #1.

With late sunrise and early sunsets in the Northern Hemisphere, they have to use split tees with a 78 player field.
I would always prefer all starters off #1 as well...  but IMO the cost of instituting cuts at WGC's would be less of the worlds best playing in them... Not worth it just to have "comfortable" tee times.
Then you came back with... don't give 'em this... don't give 'em that... and it went from there.  

Bottom line... you had the option of not bringing this debate to this board... but YOU chose to bring it up in the first place, and you chose to engage much deeper into the topic once I replied... so don't blame it on me.  But actually... IMO it was a good idea to bring it up because it's been nice to get the views from some others... so that's a good thing.

robopz

Posts : 3597
Join date : 2012-04-23
Location : Texas

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