If Jack was born ’90 instead of ’40

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  • gvogelgvogel Members  8332WRX Points: 1,228Posts: 8,332 Titanium Tees
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    Pros like Jordan Spieth who are optimizing their swing through technology and great coaching. Please. What a laugh.

    I've watched Jordan swing, and it is nowhere as good as Jack's. Some are born with great talent.

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  • cxxcxx Members  3251WRX Points: 231Posts: 3,251 Titanium Tees
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    I agree, It's all about what's between the ears. Jack won more than his share because his mind was tough and always in the game. Tiger had that for quite a while, until his fall from grace. His comeback was hard and he still hasn't reached the mental level he enjoyed in his prime.

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  • bscinstnctbscinstnct Members  28864WRX Points: 5,680Posts: 28,864 Titanium Tees
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  • BlackDiamondPar5BlackDiamondPar5 Quitting WRX may be in my future... Members  5828WRX Points: 1,146Posts: 5,828 Titanium Tees
    Joined:  edited Jan 25, 2020 3:23pm #65

    Jack and his dominance, rivalry's with Palmer etc all helped popularize golf. The Palmer/Nicklaus rivalry helped push golf from the elite to a much broader audience. If that hadn't happened maybe Earl wouldn't have introduced Tiger to golf. I suspect many others wouldn't have been introduced to golf. Same could be said if Tiger had been born in 2000 instead of 1975--- Golf wouldn't be anything that it is today.

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  • bscinstnctbscinstnct Members  28864WRX Points: 5,680Posts: 28,864 Titanium Tees
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    Seems like Earl didn’t follow golf at all until pure circumstance introduced him. Crazy to think that had he not been stationed near a golf course, there probably wouldn’t be a TW. Well, there would, but he wouldn’t even play golf. What would no golf TW have done?


    In 1972, Woods was stationed at Brooklyn's Fort Hamilton, and learned to play golf, starting at age 42,[4] at the Dyker Beach Golf Course in Dyker Heights.[9][10][11] From his first experience with golf, Woods was captivated by it, and played a great deal for the remainder of his life. He eventually became a good standard amateur golfer, often scoring in the 70s for 18 holes. Woods claimed to be playing close to scratch handicap level when his son Tiger was born in late 1975.[4] Coached by his father, Tiger Woods was introduced to golf in Orange County, California before age two,


    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earl_Woods

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  • BlackDiamondPar5BlackDiamondPar5 Quitting WRX may be in my future... Members  5828WRX Points: 1,146Posts: 5,828 Titanium Tees
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    It's always interesting to speculate how things would be different if individuals that had prolific impacts on a sport, business etc had decided to do something different in life.

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  • Carl Spackler3Carl Spackler3 Members  1220WRX Points: 383Posts: 1,220 Platinum Tees
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    Would he be able to have the same commitment to golf as well as gym dedication. He competed against 5-7 guys who could win every week not 20 like now, that transcends into less than 1/2 the success. But hey, there’s plenty of sentimentals that think Jim Brown would rush for 1,000 yards a season today.

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  • Hawkeye77Hawkeye77 IowaClubWRX  21415WRX Points: 5,375Posts: 21,415 ClubWRX
    Joined:  edited Jan 25, 2020 4:52pm #69

    I am sentimental, but I have no doubt that someone born today with Jim Brown's or Gale Sayers' talent would still be an all-timer. You see stuff on film with Gale Sayers you just don't see but with a few players over time and it's rare.

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  • Twin2LTwin2L Members  347WRX Points: 241Handicap: 12Posts: 347 Greens
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    talent will rise to the top in any age. Jacks game would have been developed differently had he been born in 75 and even more so if born in 90. Jack in his prime played a different game than Tiger in his. The same courses today play differentLy because of technology. Not club and ball technology, but course setup and maintenance tech.

    From a thousand feet view, it looks like the same game, but those of us who played over the past 4 or 5 decades know that the game plays differently. The tools look the same, but’s they are surely applied differently. Guys today chip up hill with a 60* wedge and the ball will still release 25%. In the 70’s they were bump and running a 5, 7, or 8 iron.

    It would be truly interesting to see a few tourneys set up to those “old school” fairways, rough and greens. Of course the talented players will find a way to go low, but watching them get creative would be truly exciting to see.

    Talent would win the day as it has in each generation.

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  • L29L29 Members  83WRX Points: 61Posts: 83 Fairways
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    The butterfly effect is real. How many all-time greats are selling insurance, sitting in a cubicle, flipping burgers, etc, right now due to nothing but pure circumstance?

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  • Irishman1979Irishman1979 Members  310WRX Points: 115Posts: 310 Greens
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    That would have been a blessing. I’m not a fan of the players currently on tour. They have no personality and are nerds. I remember when a fellow pro told me once I was going to realize most guys are pu$$ies abs crybabies. He was right.

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  • Ashley SchaefferAshley Schaeffer Members  2783WRX Points: 1,083Posts: 2,783 Titanium Tees
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  • rawdograwdog Cleveland, OHMembers  3054WRX Points: 160Handicap: 5.2Posts: 3,054 Titanium Tees
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    This is an excellent point.

    Have to think of everything that would've happened pre-1990 had Jack not been born then. He would not have been born into the 1990 we are familiar with.

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  • Ashley SchaefferAshley Schaeffer Members  2783WRX Points: 1,083Posts: 2,783 Titanium Tees
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    I confess that I misunderstood the hypothetical. I thought it was Nicklaus being the same, but younger. If we are talking about him being born in 1990 and having modern influences, I definitely think he would have developed into a better player than he did back then. Basic physical fitness would be drastically different.

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  • Brock SavageBrock Savage Members  2230WRX Points: 237Posts: 2,230 Platinum Tees
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    >No that's not all. It was the plane and the sponsors and the clubs and the launch monitors. All the players you claim would make Jack an also ran have the same advantages - Tiger start out "unfunded"? No plane? LOL. There should be no Tiger according to you - everybody optimizing those swings.

    Wow, I don't remember you being this slow before.

    The WHOLE POINT is that modern players have the same advantages --- which means Jack no longer has the advantage over them.

    That aside, I never said Jack would be an also-ran --- I said it stands to reason he would not have won as many events. Whether he would win more than anyone else, including Tiger, nobody can say. I've never said that Tiger, or anyone else could beat Jack head to head under fair conditions. It's impossible to know. What I have said is that Jack had weaker fields to beat than Tiger, because all of the world's best golfers never showed up at the same major until about 1980. Before then, a lot of US players good enough to win didn't play the Open, and a lot of foreign players good enough to win didn't play the other three.

    I've never said Jack wasn't a singular talent. Nobody with any sense would. But modern technology reduces the edge that talent gives you. You don't have to hit a driver dead center anymore. You don't have to be able to loft a 1-iron any more. A mishit ball doesn't hook or slice as much as it used to.

    This isn't speculation, because we saw it with Tiger. Tiger outdrove everybody by 40 yards when they were all playing steel shafts. Once driver tech improved, Tiger (and I'm talking about Tiger in his 20's, not today) was still one of the longest, but he wasn't a Walmart ahead of them any more.

    It's just a fact that Jack had a lot of advantages over his competition that either he wouldn't have today (playing all the majors, practicing at major venues weeks in advance, fields not as deep, private plane, no money worries, etc.), or that would be mitigated by modern club, ball, and training technology (his unworldly talent). I have no idea how many strokes those advantages translated to, but it seems reasonable to me that he would win less often.

    It also seems reasonable to me that with Jack in the field, Tiger would win less often. So I have no idea who would come out on top.

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  • Brock SavageBrock Savage Members  2230WRX Points: 237Posts: 2,230 Platinum Tees
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    Jordan and Jack are completely different body types, so obviously the swing that is optimal for Jack will be different than the swing that is optimal for Jordan. I can't believe I have to explain this in a golf forum.

    And a player finding his optimal swing doesn't mean he will win every event, it means he will play better than he would with a less optimal swing. So obviously a player with more talent will beat a player with less talent, even if they both have optimal swings, and if the disparity in talent is enough, even if the more talented player has a less optimal swing.

    But it stands to reason that if you are mostly playing against the 100 best players in the US, and only half of them have found their best swing, you're gong to win more events than if you are mostly playing against the 100 best players in the whole world, and 90% of them have found their best swing.

    As I tried unsuccessfully to explain to the other guy, that doesn't mean Jack would be an also-ran. Maybe the increased competition would make him practice harder, concentrate on golf rather than his equipment business or course design or whatever, and he'd win 100 events and 20 majors. I doubt it, but nobody can know, and I have no problem with people who disagree with my opinion, as long as they show that at least they understand what I'm saying.

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  • Hawkeye77Hawkeye77 IowaClubWRX  21415WRX Points: 5,375Posts: 21,415 ClubWRX
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    Optimal, schmoptimal. Start putting Seve and Tom and Arnie and Trevino on launch monitors and coaching them up you could just as easily have ruined their swings and careers. You really think just because Jack had some tuneups with Grout he didn't already own his swing and have a pretty good idea what he was doing? And guys who may have used anyone else or nobody were just wandering in the desert? Yep, he made some changes over time, so did lots of folks with coaches or without. Today's analysis ad nauseam isn't the be all you are making it out to be.

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  • iBanestoiBanesto Niclas Fasth Members  4831WRX Points: 547Posts: 4,831 Titanium Tees
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    These days with Trackman and the versatility of wedges with better course conditions, I'm sure Nicklaus' short game would improve immensely.

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  • Lincoln_ArcadiaLincoln_Arcadia We're supposed to be having fun here...yeah, right. So. Cal.Members  1194WRX Points: 217Handicap: 7.4Posts: 1,194 Platinum Tees
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    What are the differences that makes Jack’s swing that much better?

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  • Brock SavageBrock Savage Members  2230WRX Points: 237Posts: 2,230 Platinum Tees
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    Do you think it would have taken Hogan ten years to cure his hook if he had had modern technology? Forget Jack and Tiger, if Hogan hadn't wasted ten years on trial and error, not to mention the war and the bus, he could well have had 100 wins and 25 majors.

    And it's stupid to say tech could just as well ruin your swing. Why do you think everybody uses it if it's no better than a coin flip? Why do you think some swing coaches charge 20 bucks an hour and others charge a thousand bucks an hour if nothing matters but talent?

    No, it's not magic. No, it won't make everybody shoot 54 every round. But it will make you better. And with the razor thin margins between players today, getting better is a good thing.

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  • Hawkeye77Hawkeye77 IowaClubWRX  21415WRX Points: 5,375Posts: 21,415 ClubWRX
    Joined:  edited Jan 26, 2020 2:20am #82


    Plenty of players past and present have gone down swing change rabbit holes - the modern ones do it with . . . . . coaches and tech. You can't magically assume Hogan wasted his time, maybe not. Maybe there were other benefits, maybe that was the best way for him. And there is talent and then there is . . . . . . TALENT.

    It's a fantasy discussion, no reason to pound the table over what is in the end wild speculation all around, lol.

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  • deadsolid...shankdeadsolid...shank ClubWRX  15165WRX Points: 1,225Posts: 15,165 ClubWRX
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    And so then those “5-7” guys learned how to close out a tournament, even when going up against the best player of the time. How many of those fabulous “20 of those guys now” will (or ever have) gone toe to toe with Tiger down the stretch and bested him?

    Id take my chances everyday against 20 guys with a history of being more prone to a 4th round collapse than 5-7 who can close. ‘77 Turnberry, Tiger ever have that type final round? And that’s not a diss on Tiger by any means, I think he’s played the best golf ever while Jack is the best champion, just my opinion of that stale old argument about who each guy had to beat.

    But, back to the question. Can you imagine the epic years of tournaments we’d have seen if Tiger and Jack both been at their peaks at the same time?

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  • cxxcxx Members  3251WRX Points: 231Posts: 3,251 Titanium Tees
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    Not to denigrate burger flippers, but they really weren't one of the all time greats if this is where they ended up.

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  • REJREJ Members  139WRX Points: 81Handicap: Too HighPosts: 139 Fairways
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    He probably would have been discriminated against in this era. J/K.

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  • gvogelgvogel Members  8332WRX Points: 1,228Posts: 8,332 Titanium Tees
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    Natural talent, more than Spieth. Tiger has that type of natural talent.

    Rory has that type of natural talent. Maybe not so much with his putter.

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    Unseen, in the background, Fate was quietly slipping the lead into the boxing-glove.  P.G. Wodehouse
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  • JohnnyCashForeverJohnnyCashForever The bearer of unconditional things PAMembers  471WRX Points: 396Posts: 471 Greens
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    I would guess none...at least by pure circumstance. You could make an argument that Jay Sigel should have turned pro and would have been a great pro. But would he have been an all-time great if he had devoted his life to golf? I don't think so.


    Talent and temperament to be an all-time great is one thing, but the will-to-win and the fire-in-the-belly that Nicklaus, Tiger, Kobe, and Earnhardt had in their respective sports is another level, times 10. Circumstance would not have held them back, IMO. It just would have been another challenge for them to overcome on their way to greatness.

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