Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Woods and Mickelson unite, is your golf game stagnant and stop competitors from getting into your head

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Now that Presidents Cup fever has replaced FedEx Cup mayhem, it will be interesting to see how Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson perform as comrades uniting for a common goal.

Although Team U.S.A. has only five golfers ranked in the top-twenty of the PGA Tour's Official Golf Rankings, the combination of Woods, Mickelson, Stricker and Furyk will most certainly dominate at this year's event. With the addition of Scott Verplank and Stewart Cink, who always appear to keep cool under pressure, the "Internationals" will have a tough time holding on, in my opinion, even with Ernie Els leading the pack. Rory Sabbatini can't close a deal and gets flustered around Tiger Woods, Vijay Singh has missed his last two cuts and Mike Weir just hasn't shown much spunk this season. Hoping for Adam Scott and Geoff Ogilvy to hold off the Americans is like wishing for Colin Montgomerie to win an event on the PGA Tour here in the States...it just won't happen.

Phil Mickelson was featured in first few minutes of the latest Family Guy episode ("Blue Harvest") on the Fox Network (not available yet as a download). Actually, his wife Amy was the topic of discussion with Phil appearing as a cartoonish prop. The demeaning and vulgar commentary about Amy was too long, unnecessary and not really all that funny. Why did writer Alec Sulkin single out Mickelson? Could it be a weird twist on Mickelson's "family guy" image?

Or could it be because Elin Woods, a former bikini model, was just too easy a target and no one wishes to upset Woods, lest, in a fit of rage, Tiger decided to purchase the Fox Network and cancel the show!

Without watching the Turning Stone Resort Championship, it was totally up to the internet to provide us with Steve Flesch's terrific win. Congrats to Flesch although would he have had such an easy time if the top players in the world were competing at Atunyote? Or is this fall series, with the interest falling on keeping a PGA Tour card, more stressful than accruing FedEx Cup points?


Golf for Beginners podcast also discusses Mike Pedersen's new golf blog which takes us through the top reasons golfers just don't improve. In addition to these golf tips, we admit a flaw in last week's blog about the Solheim Cup and answer an email from a listener who asks, "how do you deal with playing partners who insist on keeping you up to date with your score when you'd rather not know your running score?"

Send your golf questions and comments to golfforbeginners@aol.com.

Subscribe to our weekly podcast through this RSS feed:http://feeds.feedburner.com/golfforbeginners or through iTunes. Nextel/Sprint cell customers type http://www.mymbn.com/podcast/ in your browser and click on "sports casts". Our station number is 1955.

"Shiny Tech" courtesy of Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)"

This podcast is supported by Florida Golf Travel.

This podcast is supported by New Roc Harley Davidson, your worldwide parts and accessories distributor. Great rides start here!
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Monday, September 17, 2007

Tiger Woods captures virgin FedEx Cup, Team USA clobbers ROW to retain Solheim Cup, sweep uphill chips and how to acheive a winning attitude

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Tiger Woods took home a bevy of accolades yesterday, the culmination of a yearlong effort to embrace the virgin FedEx Cup and confirm his status as Player of the Year.

In addition to a $1.25 million purse from his win at the Tour Championship, Tiger also hoisted a beautiful crystal trophy (which will have to be either repaired or replaced as a part of it was damaged at the ceremony). But, the moment which placed the gleam in Tiger's eyes and a wide, Cheshire-cat grin on his face was when he caressed the still "never-been-kissed" FedEx Cup. The virgin trophy is now in the hands of the golfer who deserves it the most. As Tiger Woods recounted, "I think once you experience it, you want to have it again. It's like winning a major championship. It feels so good, you want to get another one." Enough said!

We discuss the defense of next year's title in this week's show as well as the inability of PGA Tour golfers to keep up with Woods.

Did the knowledge that they were to receive a FedEx Cup bonus of $2 or $3 million dollars in spite of how they played on Sunday curb the charge of Stricker and Mickelson?

Introducing the subject of frustration, Sunday singles matches at the Solheim Cup proved that Team U.S.A. is once again the dominating partnership, even when on foreign soil. From Morgan Pressel's confident thrashing of Annika Sorenstam right down to the final putt of Nicole Castrale which clinched the Cup, the ladies showed spunk and determination. Although European Team Captain Helen Alfredsson tried to put a good spin on the whole affair, I think she felt that being part of a team was the most important part of the experience.

Alfredsson stated, "They're very tough on their own, and we do enjoy a lot of strength when we are a team because we like to be a team. They are a lot more individual, and I don't have the answer to them, but, in a way I'm happy that we are the strongest team because that makes us be very fun."

If fun were one of the prerequisites to winning the Cup, I'm sure Natalie Gulbis and Paula Creamer would have had a grand old time but I'm also positive the Americans celebrated with the Cup in hand as a group!

As for Team Europe, there isn't much fun and to be had as 100,000 fans come to watch you sweat.

Our golf tips this week feature lessons from both Chuck Evans and David Leadbetter. Evans helps us to develop a winning mindset during a tournament and Leadbetter's instruction on how to sweep uphill chips will save strokes for those of us who play on courses designed for billy goats.

Send your golf questions and comments to golfforbeginners@aol.com.

Subscribe to our weekly podcast through this RSS feed:http://feeds.feedburner.com/golfforbeginners or through iTunes. Nextel/Sprint cell customers type http://www.mymbn.com/podcast/ in your browser and click on "sports casts". Our station number is 1955.

"Shiny Tech" courtesy of Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)"

This podcast is supported by Florida Golf Travel.

This podcast is supported by New Roc Harley Davidson, your worldwide parts and accessories distributor. Great rides start here!
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Monday, September 10, 2007

Will Phil Mickelson's absence from the BMW Championship hand Tiger Woods the FedEx Cup, can the driving range hurt your game and redress at address

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This weekend the news on the PGA Tour wasn't necessarily that Tiger Woods won his fourth BMW Championship, his sixtieth event or even that he is close to overcoming Arnold Palmer's record but, rather, that he has all but locked up his bid for the FedEx Cup. For all of his grumbling in the past few weeks where Woods wanted to see the $10 million purse stacked up in cash at the first tee of the Tour Championship because as Tiger claimed, "I may not be around to collect it", there were no complaints yesterday as it was learned that only three golfers have a real shot at the deferred annuity next week.

The other two hopefuls will be wishing for a miracle this week at the elite thirty player field.

With Woods, Mickelson and Stricker as the only three players to have a real chance to win the FedEx Cup with a long shot stretching out to K.J. Choi and Rory Sabbatini, you have to wonder if the other twenty-five even want to show up knowing there is only about $1 million at stake during this final season tournament. With the outrageous purses growing exorbitantly each year, the only guys that seem to be interested in playing weekly are the golfers on the European Tour and those players with a fear of losing their card at the end of the season. Stricker hasn't seen a hefty payday in 146 tournaments (eleven years since he's won in the U.S.A.) so he's one of the few grinders looking forward to events with such payouts. Rory Sabbatini is just yearning to kick some Tiger butt, but is his trash talk the best part of his game?

On the other hand, not playing in the BMW Championship probably cost Phil Mickelson the FedEx Cup. If Mickelson wins the Tour Championship and Woods places second, Phil will lose the trophy, and the $10 million, by just twenty points! I wonder how that's going to sit with Lefty (and coach Butch Harmon), knowing that he won two of the four events and still came up short!

Perhaps Ernie Els said it best, "We love what the tour has done for us but we just need to get closer to the big decisions, because then we won't get into problems down the line."


Here is what the FedEx Cup boils down to this week:

If Woods wins the Tour Championship, he takes the Cup, the money and the glory of being the first to win this event.

If Mickelson wins this week, he has to hope that Woods doesn't finish in second place or Woods wins by twenty points.

If Stricker wins this week, he would take the FedEx Cup because he already won the Barclays, placing well enough in all four events to clinch the trophy.

K.J. Choi and Rory Sabbatini have an outside chance to win the FedEx Cup if Tiger Woods doesn't finish in the top-fifteen. What's the chance of that happening?


This week Golf for Beginners not only discusses backlash from top PGA Tour players about the FedEx Cup but also gives you some easy golf tips meant to help you both at the driving range and on the course. For example, what should you do if you are standing uncomfortably over the golf ball for what appears to be an inordinate amount of time? And, can any good come out of pounding golf balls at the driving range?

Send your golf questions and comments to golfforbeginners@aol.com.

Subscribe to our weekly podcast through this RSS feed:http://feeds.feedburner.com/golfforbeginners or through iTunes. Nextel/Sprint cell customers type http://www.mymbn.com/podcast/ in your browser and click on "sports casts". Our station number is 1955.

"Shiny Tech" courtesy of Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)"

This podcast is supported by Florida Golf Travel.

This podcast is supported by New Roc Harley Davidson, your worldwide parts and accessories distributor. Great rides start here!
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Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Mickelson surpasses Tiger Woods, Michelle Wie proves publicity trumps merit, easy slice fixes and other quick tips

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While watching the Deutsche Bank Championship final round, I had an unsettling feeling that Phil Mickelson was going allow his lead to slip away as soon as Tiger Woods began his ascent. Isn't that his modus operandi when placed in a pressure-cooker situation?

Tiger's pawprints were never felt as his putter let him down and Mickelson remained in control going head-to-head with "the great one" despite his double bogey "miscalculation" at the twelfth hole. With Phil now leading in the FedEx Cup standings, could he snatch the ten million dollar purse from Woods, considered to be the favorite for this cup? Maybe Woods could use a bit of help from Butch Harmon! Surely a secret or two about Phil could help Tigers' cause, or could it?

This week, Golf for Beginners cheered Mickelson to victory. We also discuss (click to listen) the interest the new 2008 HSBC Womens Champions event has in Michelle Wie, offering her an exemption in spite of the fact that all of the women golfers were offered a position based on their top-thirty status. I'll bet that ticks off more than a few of the qualifiers! Michelle has no victories but she does have what the tournament desperately needs; that is, a wealth of publicity. We therefore ask the question, "Does publicity trump merit?"

There are a few factors to consider while making your decision. For example, this event will be held in Singapore where the mention of MW's name is followed by swooning kids and more television cameras than those that cover stateside LPGA events. The event is new and the publicity could help several women's tours with the results trickling past the Duramed Futures Tour and Asian Tours even, one day, as deep as the amateur level.

The winner would also be crowned "Champion of Champions" as in the HSBC Men's event scheduled in November in which Phil Mickelson pledged to attend (more important than next week's BMW Championship?) Wouldn't it be interesting for MW to finally win this crown, putting all doubts of her ability to rest? As Barry likes to point out about Michelle Wie, "you'll see her name at the top of the leaderboard. All you have to do is flip it upside down!"

An invite to Leewood Country Club over the weekend prompted us to offer up a few golf tips from our round. We discuss the dreaded slice (who doesn't have trouble with this problem?) as well as sidehill lies and fixes for when you find the thick rough.


Send your golf questions and comments to golfforbeginners@aol.com.

Subscribe to our weekly podcast through this RSS feed:http://feeds.feedburner.com/golfforbeginners or through iTunes. Nextel/Sprint cell customers type http://www.mymbn.com/podcast/ in your browser and click on "sports casts". Our station number is 1955.

"Shiny Tech" courtesy of Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)"

This podcast is supported by Golf Canada's WestMyrtle Beach Golf and Florida Golf Travel.

This podcast is supported by New Roc Harley Davidson, your worldwide parts and accessories distributor. Great rides start here!
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