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Thursday
Jun092011

Barkley Loses The Hitch Left-Handed!

AP's Scott Sonner reports that Charles Barkley is so eager to lose The Hitch, that he may play the Tahoe celebrity event as a lefty.

"It can't be worse," Barkley said. "It's not like I'm kicking (butt) right-handed."

Known for the hitch in his stop-and-go swing, Barkley often has finished last in the 16 years he's played in the 54-hole tourney at Edgewood Tahoe Golf Course. This year, the casino sports books have made him a 500-1 longshot.

"I'm considering it. I've been talking about if for years," Barkley said about the possibility of moving over to the other side of the ball where Phil "Lefty" Mickelson practices his trade on the PGA Tour.

Barkley, an 11-time NBA all-star who retired in 1999, said he has never played a whole round of golf left handed, but has hit some shots that way at the encouragement of Hank Haney. Haney is a former swing coach for Tiger Woods who made Barkley the first star of the "The Haney Project" when it debuted on the Golf Channel in 2009.

"Last year was the first year that I tried to play lefty," Barkley said Thursday during a teleconference promoting the July 15-17 celebrity event.

"I've got a great new respect for anybody that's left-handed. If you can do anything left-handed, you're my new hero. It's the hardest thing I've ever done in my life," he said.

"But the one thing it does, to be honest with you, I don't get nervous and afraid on my way to the golf course. When I play right-handed, clearly the hitch and everything drives me nuts.

"I have no idea if I'm going to top it or shank it or whatever. So I get really nervous and agitated going to the golf course," he said. "Even though I suck left handed, it does free my mind up and I don't hitch."

Thankfully, we have YouTube to relive The Hitch whenever we want.

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Reader Comments (6)

A friend of mine with a bad shoulder switched and now shoots in the low 80s.
06.9.2011 | Unregistered Commenterhighside
I told my guys at the club during the start of the Haney project with Sir Charles that the only way that hitch was going away was for him to play left-handed. Why Hank didn't get that into Chucks head right away is a mystery to me still. Late is better than never I guess.
06.10.2011 | Unregistered Commenterthebigdad
@highside- Your friend is very talented. There are very few that could switch and break 90, Mac O'Grady excluded.
I don't ever want to read anything more about this clown, especially in a golf context.
06.10.2011 | Unregistered Commenterfourputter
I never understood why Haney didn't get him practicing taking the club to the top, holding it for a few seconds (like a baseball player) and then just swinging down from the top (like baseball). At the very least it would be worth a shot to only have one motion for awhile instead of two.
06.10.2011 | Unregistered CommenterDavid Mihm
i'm with fourputter.
06.11.2011 | Unregistered Commenterthusgone

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