T.J. Auclair is a Senior Interactive Producer for PGA.com and has covered professional golf since 1998, traveling to over 60 major championships. You can follow him on Twitter, @tjauclair.
Gretzky cover concerns some in LPGA
The May cover of Golf Digest featuring Paulina Gretzky -- daughter of hockey great Wayne Gretzky and the fiancée of golfer Dustin Johnson -- has sparked discussion and concern from a number of players on the LPGA.
Karen Crouse, golf writer for the New York Times, is in Rancho Mirage, Calif., this week for the Kraft Nabisco Championship -- the LPGA's first major.
Crouse got reaction from a number of LPGA players after the May cover Golf Digest, which shows Gretzky leaning on a golf club wearing white yoga pants and a white sports bra.
"It's frustrating for female golfers," Stacy Lewis, the No. 3-ranked female golfer in the world and a two-time major winner, said Thursday. "It's kind of the state of where we've always been. We don't get respect for being the golfers that we are. Obviously, Golf Digest is trying to sell magazines. But at the same time you'd like to see a little respect for the women's game."
Crouse noted in her piece that Gretzky is now one of 11 women since 1969 to appear alone on the cover of Golf Digest. Golf Channel's Holly Sonders -- who has also never won a LPGA event -- graced the Golf Digest cover in May 2013.
"It's frustrating because it's Golf Digest; it's not Sports Illustrated's swimsuit issue," said seven-time major winner and World Golf Hall of Famer Juli Inkster. "I think they should maybe recognize some of the great women golfers that we have. It's like, What do you have to do to get a little respect? I'm guaranteeing you right now, it was not a woman editor who chose that cover."
Crouse had this quote from Jerry Tarde, the editor in chief of Golf Digest, who approved the cover: "Sports figures, celebrities and models have appeared on Golf Digest covers since the magazine's beginning. Paulina ranks at the high end of the golf celebrity scene today, and she has a compelling story to tell. She also might get some new people interested in the game."
Follow T.J. Auclair on Twitter, @tjauclair.