Golf Buzz

March 28, 2014 - 9:00am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
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Ben Hogan
Green Jacket Auctions
These irons used by Ben Hogan during his magical 1953 season are currently up for auction at www.GreenJacketAuctions.com.

Ben Hogan's 1953 season remains one of the most impressive in the game's history. That year, Hogan won five of the six tournaments he entered, including three majors -- the Masters, U.S. Open and British Open. He didn't have the chance to win the PGA Championship because, at the time, the dates overlapped those of the British Open.

Now, golf memorabilia collectors have the opportunity to obtain a very significant part of that historic season -- Hogan's set of MacGregor irons.

WATCH: Incredible golf trick-shot video compilation by Bryan brothers

Green Jacket Auctions has the irons up for auction and will take bids until April 12. According to www.GreenJacketAuctions.com:

This isn't just any Ben Hogan iron set that he may have used once or twice. These are Hogan's actual "working" set from 1953, when he not only won 3 Majors, but was fine tuning his idea for the perfect golf club. Hogan fulfilled his lifelong goal by forming the Ben Hogan Golf Company in late 1953. Once the Ben Hogan Golf Company was formed, Hogan, of course, never used MacGregor clubs again. Therefore, since all of Hogan's used MacGregor clubs date to 1953 and before, they are coveted by collectors.

Green Jacket Auctions also states that these irons are one of only three Hogan-used MacGregor iron sets known to exist and the only set privately owned. The other two sets are owned by the USGA Museum and Merion Golf Club, where Hogan won the 1950 U.S. Open with that famous 1-iron approach to the final green.

So where did these irons come from? Green Jacket Auctions says the set is being offered by former PGA Tour player Jimmy Powell -- a four-time winner on the Champions Tour. The irons have been Powell's, "most cherished possession for well over 35 years, and originally belonged to Hogan's best friend Dennis Lavender," according to the site.

At the time of this post, the current bid was $7,320 and had not yet met the reserve price.

If you'd like to follow the auction, click here.

Follow T.J. Auclair on Twitter, @tjauclair.

 

March 27, 2014 - 9:09am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Fila Golf
Fila Golf
Fila Golf's Auckland jacket (for men) and Rockingham (for women) are new for 2014.

New for 2014, Fila Golf has introduced its Auckland and Rockingham Waterproof Performance Jackets.

The men's Auckland jacket ($110) features mesh lamination and a detachable hood, a mockneck with fleece lining, contrasting color collar, as well as shoulder, side seam and under sleeve panels for easy flexibility that won't interfere with your swing.

MORE: Visit PGA.com's extensive equipment page | PGA.com Equipment Buzz

Other features include a technical zipper front, self-adjustable sleeve closure with Velcro, two hip pockets with technical zippers, security pocket, shock cord and drawstring with plastic toggles, FILA linear logo embroidered tonal on right back shoulder and extended sport hem.

The Auckland comes in four colors: Silver / Atomic Orange; Black / Viva Red; Black / Silver; and Viva Red / Silver.

It's a jacket that's not only perfect for the golf course, but also for off the course.

Put to the test on a recent trip to the range on a chilly day, the Auckland jacket provided all the warmth you'd need without restricting your swing. The sport hem ensures that the jacket remains close to your body, staying away from your hands at address.

For women, the Rockingham jacket ($110) includes all the same features and waterproof performance of the men's Auckland and is also available in four colors: Silver / Atomic Orange; Black / Viva Red; Black / Silver; and Viva Red / Silver.

To learn more about Fila Golf's Auckland and Rockingham jackets and more offerings for 2014, visit: www.shopfilagolf.com.
 

March 27, 2014 - 8:29am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Gary Player
YouTube
Gary Player, long regarded as the best bunker player who ever lived, showed a small crowd at Pinehurst recently why that's the case.

Nine-time major champion Gary Player paid a visit to Pinehurst Resort recently.

While he was there, the 78-year-old Player made his way over to Maniac Hill -- the practice area at the resort -- and jumped in to one of the many bunkers. Throughout his illustrious career, Player built a reputation as arguably the best bunker player who ever lived.

WATCH: Incredible trick-shot compilation by the Bryan brothers

With a small crowd assembled, Player drove that point home. Player splashed a shot out of the bunker and -- when the ball is barely halfway to the hole -- he repeats, "There it is," four times before the ball drops in the hole.

Pretty cool. Check it out for yourself.

h/t to @PinehurstResort.

Follow T.J. Auclair on Twitter, @tjauclair.

 

March 26, 2014 - 7:06pm
Posted by:
John Holmes
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Tom Watson and Nick Faldo
Getty Images
Tom Watson and Nick Faldo, both former winners at the RBC Heritage, will tee it up again next month after several years away.
U.S. Ryder Cup Captain Tom Watson is focused on keeping a close eye on the PGA Tour players who are candidates to make his squad for Gleneagles in September. He'll get to take an extra-close look at some of them next month when he plays the RBC Heritage on Hilton Head Island, S.C.
 
The RBC Heritage announced Wednesday that Watson and his fellow World Golf Hall of Famer Nick Faldo will be in the field at the popular event the week after the Masters.
 
 
Watson, 63, won at Harbour Town in 1979 and again in 1982, but hasn't played there since 2001. Faldo, 56, won there in 1984 for the first of his nine career PGA Tour wins.
 
March 26, 2014 - 3:04pm
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Masters
USA Today Sports Images
Few venues in sport provide more drama and more memorable moments than Augusta National during the week of the Masters.

In an effort to get you excited about the Masters in two weeks (we're kidding -- like we really need to get you excited about the Masters!), we reached out to our 220,000+ friends in PGA.com Facebook Nation and asked the following question:

What's your favorite Masters moment?

With a course as special as Augusta National -- one that lends itself to guaranteed drama year in and year out -- there were tons of moments to choose from.

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Here's a look at some of the best moments you offered up, along with accompanying video (if we could find it) to help you relive them.

9. Bubba Watson's hook wedge in 2012. Forgetting the fact that this happened in a sudden-death playoff with the Masters on the line, the hook wedge has got to be one of the most difficult shots in golf to pull off. But, from the pine straw right of the 10th fairway, that's exactly what the lefty did to set up the victory.

8. Louis Oosthuizen's albatross on the second hole in the final round of the 2012 Masters. Oosthuizen would come up short in the playoff with Bubba Watson, but he'll never forget this albatross on the par-5 second hole that made him one of just four players in Masters history to record a rare 2 on a par 5.

7. Larry Mize's playoff-winning chip in 1987. It doesn't get much sweeter than this. Mize, an Augusta native, put a dagger through the heart of Greg Norman when -- on the par-4 11th hole, the second hole of a playoff that also included Seve Ballesteros (Ballesteros was eliminated on the first playoff hole) -- Mize holed a pitch shot for birdie. It wasn't a walk-off win as Norman still had a chance to match the birdie, but when the Aussie failed to do that, Mize slipped in to the green jacket.

6. Ben Crenshaw's win in 1995. This, the second of Crenshaw's two Masters wins, was extra special. Just days before, Crenshaw helped lay to rest his instructor, the legendary Harvey Penick. Crenshaw played with a heavy heart all week and said the thought of Penick served as his "15th club" throughout the tournament.

5. The birdie chip on the par-3 16th hole by Tiger Woods in 2005. The imagination Woods displayed on this shot was incredible. Sure, many before him and many after him, have faced this situation, relying on the backstop on the 16th green to help suck the ball back down to the front-left, Sunday hole position. But Woods perfected it. The ball just died into the hole and he went on to his fourth Masters triumph (and last, to date). The shot elicited this famous call by announcer Verne Lundquist: "Oh wow! In your life have you ever seen anything like that?"

4. Phil Mickelson's "threading of the needle from the pine needles" shot on the 13th hole in the final round of the 2010 Masters. There's no bigger risk taker in golf today than Mickelson and he proved that yet again with this doozy in 2010. What would have been a "chip it back into play" shot for most turned out to be a career highlight for Mickelson. He hit the ball between two trees and knocked it to within five feet of the hole. Mickelson didn't convert the eagle putt, but settled for birdie and went on to win the Masters for the third time.

3. Arnold Palmer wins the 1960 Masters. Before we had Mickelson, Arnie was the man who invented throwing in all the blue chips with every shot on the golf course. In 1960 at Augusta National, Palmer became the first player to birdie each of the final two holes to win. It was the second of Palmer's four Masters wins.

2. Tiger Woods wins the 1997 Masters. This is the win that really -- I mean really -- put Tiger on the map. The first of his 14 major victories, Tiger crushed the field by a record 12 strokes in becoming the youngest player ever to win the tournament at age 21.

1. Jack Nicklaus's putt on No. 17 in 1986. Many argue this was the greatest Masters of all time. This birdie putt on No. 17 pretty much sealed the deal for Nicklaus, who became the oldest player to win the Masters at age 46. It was his sixth Masters overall, which remains two better than anyone else.

Follow T.J. Auclair on Twitter, @tjauclair.

 

March 26, 2014 - 11:24am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Bryan brothers
YouTube
George and Wesley Bryan might just be the best golf, trick-shot artists in the world.

Trick-shot videos by the Bryan brothers -- George and Wesley -- have been popping up on golf sites these last few weeks almost as often as stories about the ailing back of Tiger Woods.

Well, folks, the Bryan Bros. are at it again. Today we bring you a compilation video of several unbelievable trick shots that you absolutely, positively, 100 percent must see to believe.

Here you go:

How's your mind? Blown?

As our own John Holmes explained last week, the Bryan brothers have been immersed in golf since childhood.

Wrote Holmes:

They were essentially raised at the Chapin, S.C., golf academy run by their father, PGA Professional George Bryan III. They started taking lessons from prominent PGA instructor Mike Bender at about the time they began elementary school, and both went on to star at the University of South Carolina.

Listen -- I don't care how long you've been involved in the game. These trick shots by the Bryan brothers are downright crazy. They need their own traveling show.

Like the rest of you I'm sure, I can't wait for the next one.

Follow T.J. Auclair on Twitter, @tjauclair.