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Friday
Feb222013

Bubba Still Has Chance To Win At Format That Is "Not Golf To Me"

With Bubba Watson as the only top 10 seed to advance to the final sixteen of the WGC Accenture Match Play, I guess it's now worth noting his crabby comments from the earlier week.

Thanks to reader Chris from DE for sending these golf.com comments from Bubba about match play, which I deemed irrelevant in anticipation of first round loss by the struggling Watson. That should give you some idea how my brackets are looking right now.

Anyway, Jeff Ritter reports the context and remarks for golf.com and the textbook Bobby Joe Grooves comment:

"I don't like it. I'd rather play stroke play for four days," Watson told Golf.com on Tuesday near a practice area here at the Golf Club at Dove Mountain. "You can make an eight on a hole and you're only one down. That's not golf to me. I think it should be, everybody gets up there and tries to shoot a score."

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Reader Comments (40)

Remarkably clueless isn't he? like so much of the general population he has no knowledge or concept of history....
02.22.2013 | Unregistered CommenterTed Ray's Pipe
Having played hundreds of matches in organized competition, I'd have thought that Bubba's style of play would be excellent in match play.

Maybe if he wins the darned thing he'll come around.

K1P
02.22.2013 | Unregistered Commenterkenoneputt
If he wins, perhaps he can donate the cheque to his favourite cause; perhaps the money's not real money. I think the golf is real golf, though.
It's amazing how Bubba plays golf like a guy who understands its soul, and talks golf like a chucklehead from your local muni.
02.22.2013 | Unregistered CommenterG
Time to grow up, Princess Bubba.
02.22.2013 | Unregistered CommenterPJ
G - that is the best description of Bubba's relationship with golf that I've ever read. Bang on.
02.22.2013 | Unregistered CommenterPJ
@ G brilliant description of Bubba. He is so far OTL sometimes, you think it might be fake! NOT! He is savant with the clubs and about an 18 between the ears.
A lot of players don't care for match play, or at least prefer stroke play. Many absolutely don't like the one-and-done possibilities of this event. Mickelson, for example. Bubba was trying to speak honestly, and him not being the sharpest knife in the drawer, misstated IMO. Remember, this is the same guy who said he loves Ryder Cup--all match play--above all else. Better that he speak his mind than clam up or be completely politic like so many others.
02.22.2013 | Unregistered CommenterDoctor
I think any pro who grows up in the US is going to find match play a little foreign. It isn't even a big part of the club culture in North America.

As much as I enjoy playing matches, and find the RC exciting, I find this event kind of dull. It reminds me of March Madness or the NHL playoffs - the first stages are the most exciting for fans.
02.22.2013 | Unregistered CommenterTighthead
Like I tell my kids, just because you think something, doesn't mean you have to say it out loud.

However, I like it that he is honest, and if some things he says are contradictory, that doesn't mean he isn't telling the truth.
good thing he doesnt anchor...
02.22.2013 | Unregistered Commenterjay
G - super observation on Bubba. But it might say something about the game, too. Feel and imagination beats knowledge, because that's where the soul of the game lies. Seve didn't know much about the history of the game, either, and treated the British links just like he did the beach in Pedrena.
02.22.2013 | Unregistered CommenterHawkeye
Spot on G!

Give Bubba a few hours to think this over and he'll say he likes match play because medal play is too darn slow.
02.23.2013 | Unregistered Commenterjohnnnycz
There are a lot of pious golf snobs on this site. What is the big issue with what Bubba said? I wonder if sometimes he isn't still paying for his remarks when he was playing in Europe. There are many players who prefer stroke play to match play, they just won't admit it. And you know what? They aren't wrong.

I'm sure somebody would like to bring up Bubba's car, too. So, in addition to telling him what kind of golf he should like, we will soon discover how he should spend his millions.
02.23.2013 | Unregistered CommenterLip Out
Dude is entitled to his opinion.

My daddy told me that to be a great golfer you have be either really smart or really dumb, and that most good players are stuck somewhere in between.
As Geoff posted recently, "Stroke play is a better test of golf but match play is a better test of character." JOE CARR
02.23.2013 | Unregistered CommenterPeter Norrie
The choice in PGA Tour players seems to be robotically boring or pig ignorant, which is becoming equated with "honest" (and, even worse, "charming"). Not much of a reflection upon them as a demographic.
02.23.2013 | Unregistered CommenterGhillie
@ Lip Out - if you look at the posts you'll see the subject is golf and his comments - NOT what kind of car he drives or what he said in Europe. YOU introduced both of those subjects
02.23.2013 | Unregistered CommenterTed Ray's Pipe
Ian Poulter says that "Match play is the purest form of golf"

It's one on one and the loser goes home.
02.23.2013 | Unregistered CommenterStanley Thompson
Funny how Bubba also talks about how much he loves the Ryder Cup. Make up your mind, dude!
02.23.2013 | Unregistered CommenterFWIW
The object of every type of golf game is to get the ball in the hole with the fewest number of strokes. Sometimes, it's to do so fewer times than your opponent. Sometimes, it's to do so fewer times than the rest of the field. It can be on treeless, windblown links; lush azaleas and Georgia pines; or your local, crap muni. These are merely formats and venues. There is no "pure" form of golf. Golf in and of itself is the purest form of golf.
02.23.2013 | Unregistered CommenterGabe
A stroke play tournament almost always beats an individual match play tournament for television purposes. Team match play makes for the best televised sport on the planet. For me, at home, match play is 99 times better than stroke play.

Nothing wrong with Bubba's opinion however and refreshing he offers it. We pounce all over [insert your favorite, denigrating nickname for Tiger here] when he provides bland, empty statements in the media. This guy speaks his mind and we do the same.
02.23.2013 | Unregistered CommenterSeán O'Nuallain
Betcha NBC is likin' Bubba right about now. He's their only shot at having more than 11 people watching.
02.23.2013 | Unregistered CommenterAG
Is Bubba the modern day Moe Norman?
02.23.2013 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
How many of us play stroke play ourselves EVER? Only during tournaments....usually member/guest type affairs which are either scrambles or best ball type of events - team stroke play, not individual.

After watching the pros last weekend at Riviera, I witinessed what a grind stroke play truly is - you need to be 100% focused on every shot, for 5 hours. Over 4 days. No wonder these guys never smile and act like robots (at least the majority seem to).

Match play is much more fun...I think everyone who plays golf would agree that those high risk/high reward shots are the most memorable, and stroke play discourages that type of play - better safe than sorry.
02.23.2013 | Unregistered CommenterManku
Bubba is entitled to his opinion, despite seeming to have a deficiency of inhibitory neurons and an excess of excitatory neurons.

Watching Bubba and Furyk play was entertaining. At the conclusion, I felt the headline should have been, ''ADHD defeats OCD."
02.23.2013 | Unregistered Commentergov. lepetomane
Bubba has a point, but it is doubtful he realizes that 6/13 of Bob Jones' Majors were contested at match play. I'm assuming he knows who Bob Jones was. The American stroke play jones is why our players seem so characterless, too. Moe Norman? No. Bubba didn't get his head run over by a car when he was a small boy. Personally I love match play, but finding a group that is honest enough for it has been a trial. That, and the last time I was in an important tournament match I was dispatched 6&5 by a Reinstatement Special. And only got it down to that by chipping in on our penultimate hole, which he did not take well after I laughed out loud ;-)
02.23.2013 | Unregistered CommenterKLG
Are you like me? Do you find that this "World Golf Championship" match play thingie is The Most Boring Tournament of the Year? Mainly because -- unlike every other event on Tour -- it becomes Less Interesting each day the event progresses. Here it is only Saturday and already all the number one seeds are gone... no-name journeymen continue to plow through and the final will wind up with just two guys going at it for nearly five hours of hardly-riveting golf. Ho hum. Yes, I get the Ryder Cup but the team format dictates an exciting event because the field doesn't thin as the week goes on. It's this week that makes me wish the all-important Honda Classic would hurry up and get here.
02.23.2013 | Unregistered CommenterBenSeattle
You sure abt that Ky? ;0)
02.23.2013 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
@BenSeattle. While the top seeds are gone, I don't think it's as boring as you make it out to be. You have 3 major winners still in it plus the Ryder Cup beast, Poulter. And the defending champ, Mahan, is playing well. I don't love the course but the tournament itself is a refreshing break from 38 other weeks of stroke play.
02.23.2013 | Unregistered CommenterGabe
I wonder if Bubba will complain about the cacti?
02.23.2013 | Unregistered CommenterRandom Fan
@ Ben. Spot on. Worst weekend on the PGA Schedule. And it doesn't matter who gets through and who doesnt. Match play just is not as exciting of a format. in stroke play, even a big lead can alway be squandered with a blow up hole and / or a miracle shot. Once a year is plenty.
02.23.2013 | Unregistered CommenterBrianS
Match play all the way, on TV as well as with friends.

In stroke play there's not much drama until the last hour or two on Sunday. In match play there's drama all day every day. Ditto, doubled, when playing rather than watching.
02.23.2013 | Unregistered Commenter3foot1
The World Matchplay at Wentworth was always exciting to watch. Faldo vs Woosnam in the early 1990s was a cracker.

In terms of different formats, I always enjoyed the modified stableford format at The International at Castle Pines. Excitement all the way to the finish.

I think I'd enjoy the WGC Matchplay better if it was at a great course like Cypress Point or Pine Valley.
02.23.2013 | Unregistered CommenterDan
"Worst weekend on the PGA Schedule. And it doesn't matter who gets through and who doesnt."

Really? I thought the matches this afternoon were interesting and fun to watch. And two of them came down to the last hole. Not enough fist pumping for you BrianS? Do you have much history with golf?
02.23.2013 | Unregistered CommenterBobby D
@Bobby D - I believe my wife and kids can attest to the amount of golf I watch and for how many years. Lets just say it has been since pre-Tiger.

Do you always feel the need to take shots as those who's opinion you disagree with ? Should I submit a history of tourney's that I have watched before I can submit a comment worthy of your time to read it ?

I stand by my comment. The combination of so few golfers, along with the fact that the top guys are often eliminated early on, makes for long day. I will grant you that Saturday, with the elimination aspect, has some drama, but Sunday is usually a tough slog, especially when they used to make them play 36 holes a few years back. And I will also stick with my belief that match play, while very fun to play, is not as enjoyable on TV (or in person for that matter, since you don't even know which holes will be played). The best thing about stroke play is that every stroke counts, and that a player is one bad swing away from disaster. In match play, a 10 on a hole can be no worse than a bogey, or even a par. But hey, that's my opinion now isn't it.
02.23.2013 | Unregistered CommenterBrianS
But, BrianS, I bet you will watch it.
02.24.2013 | Unregistered CommenterStanley Thompson
"And I will also stick with my belief that match play, while very fun to play, is not as enjoyable on TV (or in person for that matter"

BrianS...do you find The Ryder Cup to be "enjoyable on TV"? Were you the guy in the ACDC tee shirt I saw in the gallery yesterday?
02.24.2013 | Unregistered CommenterBobby D
@Bobby D - you are right, I was there. I even thought of a new thing: when the guy hits it, if you yell "MASHED POTATOES" or some such, you might hear yourself on TV. Really awesome.
02.24.2013 | Unregistered CommenterBrianS
Sad that Bubba feels this way. Match play is such an exciting format for all levels of competition. But I am confident he will come around eventually.
02.24.2013 | Unregistered CommenterRob

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