For Golden State Warriors star Andre Iguodala, there has really only been one downside to three straight berths in the NBA Finals and two championships. Those deep playoff runs wreak havoc on his golf game.
Iguodala is a golf fanatic who organizes his offseason workouts to accommodate his second competitive passion. His handicap in the summer time drops to 12, but he says it “blows up” to 15 during the season when he can’t play as often.
“Right now, I’m the lowest I’ve ever been,” Iguodala said. “I’m at a 12.3. I’ve been between 85 and 89 for two weeks straight. I just hit my ball well and I have that one bad hole that keeps me from 82. I’m feeling really good about my game and the season is right around the corner to ruin it again. I’m going to try to enjoy it while it lasts.”
Iguodala is parlaying that interest in golf into a job with Turner Sports covering the PGA Championship next week. Iguodala will be a “special contributor,” appearing on camera during the broadcast and providing content on social media during the major championship.
He has golfed Augusta National with Steph Curry, played in pro-ams with Justin Thomas and is a big fan of Rory McIlroy. Now he hopes his irreverent presence on social media and his dry sense of humor can splash some fun into the weekend at Quail Hollow Club in Charlotte, North Carolina.
“I’m looking forward to the on-camera thing, just to let people know my knowledge of the game and pretty much test myself,” Iguodala said.
Golf provides an outlet to break away from the grind of the NBA season. He’ll play on the road during longer trips, including during the playoffs, and calls Contra Costa Country Club in Pleasant Hill, California, his home course.
“I feel like golf has brought me some peace,” said Iguodala, one of the best sixth men in the NBA. “When things aren’t going right, I can get out on the golf course and when things are going really good on the court I can go and enjoy the scenery, enjoy the weather.
“And when I’m too high, I can have golf humble me and beat me up a little bit. It’s a really good place for me to be, on the golf course.”
Despite his best efforts, Iguodala hasn’t closed the golfing gap on Curry, who is nearly a scratch golfer. Warriors coach Steve Kerr pulled some strings to get the two on at Augusta after their first championship in 2015. Iguodala is still chasing Curry a few years later.
“That dude’s too good,” Iguodala said. “His game has gotten better as mine has gotten better. I need him to get worse.”
The PGA Championship begins on Aug. 10 on TNT. Iguodala will walk the course, potentially interview players and post content on PGA.com’s social media platforms on Aug. 11.
While many basketball players get into the media side of things to analyze games either in retirement or during the offseason, Iguodala is trying to strike out on a different path. He mentioned former Cavaliers star Brad Daugherty’s foray into NASCAR as inspiration to put his golf interest to work.
“That’s exactly what I’m looking forward to — is getting away from basketball. It’s something different,” Iguodala said. “I want to test myself and show people what I’m capable of doing in a different area that is kind of out of my comfort zone.”
This article is written by John Krawczynski from the Associates Press and was legally licensed via the Tribune Content Agency through the NewsCred publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.