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« Oakmont Interested In 2021 Walker Cup | Main | Davis Declares: Cut The Rough, Let The Birdies Begin! »
Tuesday
Sep182012

Shark: "What I’m seeing is that Tiger’s really intimidated by Rory"

Robert Lusetich talks to Greg Norman about the Tiger-Rory bromance, and the self-appointed expert on all things male and testosterone sees intimidation in Tiger's eyes.

“What I’m seeing is that Tiger’s really intimidated by Rory,” he says. “When have you ever seen him intimidated by another player? Never.

“But I think he knows his time’s up and that’s normal; these things tend to go in 15-year cycles.

“Jack took it from Arnold (Palmer). I took it from Jack, Tiger from me and now it looks like Rory’s taking it from Tiger.”

I knew Greg was going to slip himself in there somehow! Took it from Jack eh?

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Reader Comments (44)

"Greg took it from Jack"....must have missed that!
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterNick Green
Tiger is just setting the guileless lad up.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterRose
I think Norman has officially jumped the shark
09.18.2012 | Unregistered Commenterelf
Wait. Norman "took it" from Jack?! Did Seve, Watson, Trevino et al have no piece in that linear equation? I love the Shark, but clearly not nearly as much as he loves himself.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterFWIW
If Tiger is intimidated by that guy, then I've literally wasted the last 16 years of my golf-viewing life. Which reminds me - who is this Shark guy? Is he the one with the comically oversized shirts they sell in Reebok outlets?
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterDsl
elf with the post of the year! Greg took it, then shanked his approach on the 72nd at Augusta in 1986, and never had it again.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterGolden Bell
Seems that Faldo might have taken it from Norman?
09.18.2012 | Unregistered Commenterfwiw
He's never been afraid of a bit if shameless self promotion!!
09.18.2012 | Unregistered Commenter14 Times.
To be fair, 1986 was the first OWGR. And Norman was #1 for in 1986 and for 6 of the next 11 years. I'm not saying he was Arnie, Jack or Tiger, or that the OWGR is the best way to measure, but it has to mean something.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterGinGHIN
The remarks may sound preposterous but Norman for all his faults was the 'Hollywood' golfer of his generation. He would receive the largest appearance fees and I would imagine be the biggest draw at any tournament he played in so in that respect his comments are true. Faldo never provided the excitement levels that Norman did and only Seve(in Europe) would have matched up to Norman.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterRonnieRocket
I don't think Tiger's intimidated by Rory or any other golfer. Maybe he's easing into an elder statesman's role or exercising the old political practice of holding your friends close and your enemies closer.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterMike T.
The Shark is still quite enamored with himself.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterGus
Checking out the article in question ... the Shark has some interesting comments weighing in on Rory's chances to pass Jack. I'm not even sure how that can really be in ANY conversation. Nearest to Jack is TW - then there's a huge pack a few behind (as everybody here knows). If Rory finishes his career with 7-10 Majors and 45+ regular wins, I'd think he's had a fantastic career.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterPepperdine
More like Laura took it from Greg.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterManos
It is a comment that feels a bit over the top, yes. But I vividly recall the talk at the 1986 PGA for the first three rounds (I was 10, my life revolved around golf and I had the 1986 majors on VHS to take me through the Swedish winter) when Jim McKay quoted defending champion Hubert Green, who had said after playing with him the first two rounds: "Norman is the first guy since Nicklaus who intimidates the other players. Not intentionally, but there is just something about his prescence on the golf course that is different from other players".
Sure, Norman lost that major after a freak shot by Bob Tway. And he lost the next major after afreak shot by Larry Mize. But he did not pick that line out of thin air. And he could have - perhaps should have - had three consecutive majors in ´86 and ´87, when people were saying that about him. If he feels robbed of a legacy, it's understandable.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterHawkeye
Tiger is probably not intimidated. But, is he confused and dazed about the emergence of someone with an "A" game better than his after 15 yrs? YES.

That said, Tiggly Wiggly is massively sucking up to McIroy for whatever reason. For someone of Woods' reputation, it looks ridiculous.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterAbu Dhabi Golfer
I loved the way that Greg played golf and perhaps there's something to what he says, but really, he's too much. Faldo won 6 majors between 1986 (Jack's last, Greg's first) and 1997 (Tiger's first). Greg won 2 and blew several.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterBardolinks
Not sure if "intimidated" is the right word, but Rory is under his skin for sure though.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterNubi
In the comic books days, sometimes Superman and Batman teamed up, so maybe Rory and Tiger's blossoming friendship is sort of like that. The problem for Tiger is that he's now Batman.
Have we seen TWs "A" game since 2009 USPGA? I dunno about that. Will we ever see his A-A+ game again? Not sure about that either.

However - and this is from a Rory "fan" - Mcilroy would have to have an incredible run to even be in the same conversation of overall skill as TW. Win multiple regular events in a row (5+, 6+), multiple times, lead 11/16 statistical categories, finish well under par in a Major that nobody else could sniff a bird - etc. TW has secured his spot in golf lore.

@ Abu Dhabi - Rory has got a career to go - and we all get a front seat to see how he progresses ... but I'm not sure what TW could do in this spot to NOT "look ridiculous". Growl at the kid? Laugh at him? Hit him over the head with a Method putter? Any response TW gives to anybody or anything in any way is overblown/hyped.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterPepperdine
Have we seen TWs "A" game since 2009 USPGA? I dunno about that. Will we ever see his A-A+ game again? Not sure about that either.

However - and this is from a Rory "fan" - Mcilroy would have to have an incredible run to even be in the same conversation of overall skill as TW. Win multiple regular events in a row (5+, 6+), multiple times, lead 11/16 statistical categories, finish well under par in a Major that nobody else could sniff a bird - etc. TW has secured his spot in golf lore.

@ Abu Dhabi - Rory has got a career to go - and we all get a front seat to see how he progresses ... but I'm not sure what TW could do in this spot to NOT "look ridiculous". Growl at the kid? Laugh at him? Hit him over the head with a Method putter? Any response TW gives to anybody or anything in any way is overblown/hyped.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterPepperdine
When you hear Nicklaus in interviews he doesn't talk about Norman taking over for him he talks about Tom Watson and I agree. Norman was the best player as far as pure talent goes, for a stretch, but Watson has the majors. As for intimidation, I don't buy that TW is intimidated by Rory. He knows he's a great player but in Tiger's mind I believe it is a challenge and until he is not in contention for quite a few majors in a row, I don't think I would write him off. Norman and Miller seem to think more of their place in history than their records indicate.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered Commenterol Harv
Everything that Hawkeye said...except I was 12yrs old..and from an almost equally desolate winter golfing environment...Calgary AB!....Go Flames!!!


Folks sure seem to love to bash Greg when he speaks his mind, which he does quite often irregardless of the "popular" opinion...the unavoidable truth is that the man has actually walked the walk in the world of golf and was lucky enough to see what it's really like at the top so his opinion does in fact matter....I just wish the regular golf media would sometime remember that instead of feeding the knee-jerk peanut gallery (of which I am an occasional participant ;-))
09.18.2012 | Unregistered Commenterjohnnnycz
While his opinion may matter, how the hell does he know what is inside TW's mind? Can we just see how it plays out? What's up with all of the arm chair psychology from all these guys?

And in this case, I do agree with those posters who correctly and astutely noted that there is an undercurrent/no love lost between the Shark and the Tiger.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterSari
Agree with Hawkeye and johnnycz, except I was 15yrs old and an Aussie, so watched him live a bit through the 80s. Not a Shark lover, as I've always found the 'I was in awe of myself' and 'I'm a quadruple-A personality' stuff a bit hard to take. 'I took over from Jack' is just more of the same.

But, he was massive in that period. The guy had a serious aura about him. He's six one or two, but seemed ten feet tall. Shivas Irons stuff. In the Aussie summer of '85/'86, I think he won five tournaments straight, and every other player was beaten on the first tee. Sure, just Aussie fields, but some good players in there, ie future major winners Grades and IBF (the Dark Shark, as we came to know him, somewhat jokingly).

Again, I'm no Shark apologist, but it's a bit sad he's remembered as a guy who couldn't close out the majors. Sure, he had that fatal flaw, but on balance luck was probably against him - Mize being exhibit A. The guy won 88 or so tournaments, and was No 1 in the world for a total or nearly seven years. It takes more than a bit of talent and 'closing ability' to do that.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterKnee Bend
1. It's ok to think something, but saying it out loud is something else. Greg never learned this, I guess.

2. Opinion: Tiger game-faced all other challengers thru the years because he knew he was much better and would ultimately prevail.
He's only treating Rory like he's Cookie or Marco because he knows Rory is indeed "the next one" and doesn't want to look like a sad ghost by putting the mental wood to him and failing.
He wants to be able to say, "I'm fine with it; hell, I saw it coming. I love the kid."

OK, either that, or Wozniacki has a sister.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered Commenterwillie
willie: +1
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterKLG
I think TIger likes Rory, because Rory is the first player Tiger has played that can play up to Tiger's best.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterJoey
Wow. I really did just laugh out loud. What an oaf! The Big Four - Arnie, Jack, Shark, Tiger!
"Took it from Jack"? No. That's wrong. If anyone took it from Jack it was Watson, then Watson and Seve and then Faldo from them. Not Norman.
"Tiger took it from him"? No. That's wrong, too. Tiger took it from Tom Lehman, who granted didn't have it long... maybe he took it from Norman, maybe Faldo.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered Commenterlloydcole
johnny no such word as irregardless....it's regardless. English 101. Double bogey.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterTicky B
I know Norman was #1 for a long time, but who was he playing against?

And for anyone who thinks luck was all that got him in 86, check what he shot in the last round of the PGA... 76.

And the following year when Mize beat him in a playoff at the Masters, he shot 72 on Sunday after a 66 on Saturday to get in contention--hardly the stuff of legends.

K
09.18.2012 | Unregistered Commenterkenoneputt
Watson's time ended by the 80s. It was the Shark's time. He didn't win like Tiger, but he was THE MAN (just not in the majors, obviously).
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterAK47
Funny Ticky B. Amazing how frequently that particular non-word is used.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
This is a personal vendetta. Norman wants to be Tiger's Friend at Metalist.. Tiger basically ignore the Guy. This is pretty sad actually....I feel sorry for Mr. Norman.
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterGolfNDaBay
@Ken: That final round at Inverness wasn't a thing of beauty, no. But if you don't think it's bad luck to stand on the 11th tee with a four-shot lead, hit a perfect tee shot and find the ball in a non-sandfilled divot (eventually leading to a double bogey on an easy hole and having your lead cut in half) then I don't know what bad luck is. Had that not happened, then Tway's shot probably wouldn't have mattered. Speaking of bad luck, how about Mark Calcavecchia's skulled pitch on the 12th at Troon in ´89 that landed in the hole on the fly and stayed in?
09.18.2012 | Unregistered CommenterHawkeye
Norman is not in the same league professionally with Arnie, Jack or Tiger, plain and simple, he's delusional. Norman should have worked on his own demons, never seen such an utter collapse at a major like Norman's at Augusta. Made JV's 18th at Carnoustie look like a birdie. I'm sure Shack will defend this comment though since he loves everything Australian. Their architecture, the way they rake a bunker, the way the sun dances off the fair Aussie faces. Love you though Geoff!

Rick
09.19.2012 | Unregistered CommenterRick D
Ken, who was Shark playing against? A cursory glance at the world rankings at the start of 1990 shows 16 of the top 20 were or would become major champions: Norman, Faldo, Ballesteros, Strange, Stewart, Kite, Azinger, Olazabal, Calcavecchia, Woosnam, Lyle, Couples, Langer, Crenshaw, Mize, Watson.

Most of them could play a bit.
09.19.2012 | Unregistered CommenterKnee Bend
Knee Bend beat me to the punch!

The mid 80's up until you know who appeared on the scene was a great time in pro golf...that was when par 5's played like actual par5's and long irons were seen being used to hit par4's...thus allowing the better players (eg: Norman, Faldo, Seve, and the rest) to separate themselves thru superior ball striking skill. Perfect example is when Nick Price won like 6 tournaments in a year (94? or 95?)...when I told my college teammate that he just won the Cdn Open in impressive style, my friend couldn't and wouldn't believe it before he saw it on Sportscenter that night,he thought (as most golf fans at the time did) that winning more than 2x on Tour in a year was next to impossible....THAT'S how good the competition was kenoneputt.
09.19.2012 | Unregistered Commenterjohnnnycz
Wow, Mr Norman or butter on the desert, who melted in The Masters, is talking about intimidation, ha ha ha.
09.19.2012 | Unregistered CommenterLuis
Greg didn't get the majors, but he was the straw that stirred the drink, as Reggie Jackson would say.

Watson had a better career, but I don't think he was ever the dominant, charismatic figure that the Shark was. People tend to forget that Watson's final major was in 1983.
09.19.2012 | Unregistered CommenterTighthead

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