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AK Is Alive, Not Playing Golf, But Not Living In A Box Either

In his weekly Hawk's Nest column, John Hawkins uses the return this week to Quail Hollow and the Wells Fargo Championship to ask what has happened to Anthony Kim, who blew a field away by five in 2008 at the event. Kim hasn't played the PGA Tour since the 2012 Wells Fargo when he withdrew after an opening 74.

On the two year anniversary of AK's disappearance, Hawkins talks to Kim's IMG agent about his whereabouts and status. Clarke Jones denies that Kim was ever suspended by the PGA Tour, but also reveals that Kim is not playing much golf these days.

In search of something resembling context, I asked Jones if Kim was playing any golf, even recreationally.

Doesn’t sound like much of a comeback, if you ask me. “He’s not living under a bridge, he’s not living in a box,” Jones added. “I’m going to go see him [in Texas] in a few weeks, and at that point, I’ll get a better definition of where he stands.”

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Reader Comments (37)

How long have we got until ALL the articles are about people who aren't playing?
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterBlackballed Vijay
You can disappear quite comfortably with the 3 wins and 12 million he earned from 2006-12. Achilles injuries are pretty serious and the hand injury that preceded that foot injury kept recurring. Is Kim still officially on medical leave from the PGA Tour? If that is true, he simply has not recovered from his injuries. Two years and counting makes you wonder if he will ever be the same......
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterStephenP
There could be lots of reasons for his disappearance, besides dealing with injuries. It could be that he grew tired of the pressures that come with being a "made man" on tour and having to live up to everyone else's expectations of how he should play inside the ropes while some remind him of how he should live outside of them. Who really knows?

I don't know the guy or know what drives him, but not having touched a club in a while would suggest to me that maybe there's more to AK's life than golf. Sure, these guys get paid lots of money if they're relatively decent players... but maybe it's just not what he thought it would be.

It happens.
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterPA PLAYA
"With Glittering prizes and endless compromises...shattering the illusion of integrity....YEAH!"

Got Rush on the brain this morning...seemed like an apropos line.
04.29.2014 | Unregistered Commenterjohnnnycz
If I made 11 birdies in a round in the Masters, I'd consider giving up to.
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterStreaky Putter
I vaguely recall reading an article, in SI (?) about his hedonistic, unconventional lifestyle involving multiple women...wonder if he's settled down a bit??
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterMedia driven
Time to sell my AK belt buckle
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterFeenmachine
Anthony Kim the Angela Park of the PGA Tour. Park never won but was 2007 Rookie of the Year, 2nd at the 2007 US Open, 3rd at the 2008 US Open. Her golf game suddenly fell apart by mid 2009 and then she quit the LPGA at the end of 2010. By summer 2011 she was working as a hotel clerk. She tried to regain her LPGA card but failed.
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterBill
AK was so much fun to watch. He had the cocky swagger about him, made a ton of birdies and a lot of bogeys. Hopefully he's still recovering from the injuries and will start back once he's fully healthy. I remember that President's Cup against Allenby. IF I remember correctly he dusted RA in a singles match after an all night bender.
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterTor Eckman
AK needs to shape up and start out at the Fry's this fall and try to earn back his Tour Card. Too much talent to let waste.
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterNick
I wonder why GC doesn't use John Hawkins in more of an on-air role? He is not reluctant to express an unpopular opinion, unlike Rosaforte and many others. Might need a little grooming, but not bad looking appearance.

He's wasted just doing online chats and columns that don't get wide readership.
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterHawk fan
Perhaps he's writing a book.
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterSteven T.
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterAbu Dhabi Golfer

Hawk fan .. it was my understanding .. either by alcohol, anti-depressants, benzos .. combination of all of the above .. OR .. a tumor or concussions .. that Hawkins slurred his speech too much to be on TV.

Take it for it is worth .. that was from people in the television industry and not Golf Channel but just .. "I got a buddy who says .." So, that's like .. three hand me downs from the horse's mouth.

But that was always my understanding about Hawkins.

04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterDD
Talented guy that hasn't really been missed.
04.29.2014 | Unregistered Commentertlavin
Another guy that was way over-hyped and way over paid by Nike.

This is BS: "It could be that he grew tired of the pressures that come with being a "made man" on tour and having to live up to everyone else's expectations." I don't recall there being any expectations put on him, except maybe from his sponsor, which we wouldn't know about, but would have been quite legit..considering he took their money. Nobody really cared how he lived his life, he was free to do whatever, but he made it seem he'd rather be playing pickup basketball with his buddies than out on tour.

I said he was a dud a while ago, and got jumped on because of it, but I was right. Another Nike victim.
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterPress Agent
Never was a fan of his swing, but I did respect the interview he did with Jim Rome talking about his problems. I could look for a link but basically he confessed to staying up multiple times all night drinking and then going straight to the golf course to play his morning round.
Remember the incident with Robert Allenby years ago at the President's Cup? He absolutely crushed Allenby in singles and then after the round Allenby claimed Kim was up all night drinking.

There's a wasteland of young and talented players now, so to me the loss of Anthony Kim is pretty small. But he did have a personality and "swagger" so the casual fans did like him. That said he's not going to get any remorse on this golf blog, who would find negative things in literally any story that Geoff posts.
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterChicago John
I wonder if Hawkins isn't or wasn't marginialized in some way because he had the cojones to stick it to Jolly Cholly Rhymer on air once or twice, putting down Rhymer's gushing over something or other...I found it appropriate and deserving.
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterAnti Charlie
<< I wonder why GC doesn't use John Hawkins in more of an on-air role? He is not reluctant to express an unpopular opinion, unlike Rosaforte and many others. Might need a little grooming, but not bad looking appearance. He's wasted just doing online chats and columns that don't get wide readership. >>

I know nothing about Hawkins' alleged problems with either meds or cocktails but from this viewer's perspective, he was simply an unpleasant, unappealing personality. Perhaps he was trying to carry on the persona created in his old Golf World column "The Angry Golfer," but Hawkins played the role of curmudgeon and contrarian. He constantly appeared out-of-sorts and flat-out unhappy to be there. And he did all this without a hint of humor or even the occasional smile. Following Phil Mickelson's miraculous shot from the pine straw on number 13 at the 2010 Masters, all Hawkins could do is scream "But he missed the putt! He missed the putt!" Way to look at the dark side, Hawk.

Obviously, Golf Channel realized that not all competent writers make an easy transition from keyboard to on-air talent. Now if they would only wake up and make the same assessment of the woefully out-of-place Damon Hack.
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterBenSeattle
"Another Nike victim."

Is Seung-Yul Noh next?
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
Given his talent, quality of some of his wins and performances, some high level play in a few international events, and had several top perforamnces in majors in not too many efforts. He made his millions. He can do what he wants.

You can say he was an underachiever but to call him a dud or a stiff is inaccurate.

There was a good expose on him early in his career. He had no idea what the majors were in golf. He had no idea who had won them or how many the greats had. He didn't even like golf so much as he did basketball. Not everybody is built the same way. If he has even 10% of his earnings and sponsorships in the hands of a good investment team, he'll be fine. Some stars burn out and others fade away, and some get a wrist injury and don't feel it's worth the effort to claw all the way back from the abyss.
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterStreaky Putter

I didn't want tobe the one to drop the anti Hack track, but the guy talks more about how to improve his 22 handicap than he does dong real telejornalsm.

He is certainly likable, but he is not the standard to be strived for in that role. He does many things well, but the producers need to exercise selectvity in their usage of talent.

I like Hawk, but many points are made here.
04.29.2014 | Unregistered Commenterdigsouth
Soon we'll know who the next death by Swoosh is
04.29.2014 | Unregistered Commenter3PuttAficionado
Hawkins is not a back slapper or glad hander like a D Hack who greets everyone with "Hey buddy.'' I think GC could use a little more vinegar but they would rather have a bunch of smiley folks who appear to get along great.
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterHawk fan
DTF, you make me laugh. You think 'some' success, excuses all the failures. The law of averages says of course they are going to sign some good ones, but how many are ruined along the way? And to what end? to be able to say we beat Titleist, Callaway and Adidas Taylor Made to the punch and signed them? Way to go!! Still nobody uses your equipment so....ok, to each his own.
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterPress Agent

It wold be nice if TGC had ANY talent evaluation protocols in place, full stop. This is the flagship network of an entire sport and the best we can do is Kelly Tilghman, Tripp Isenhour and Rich Lerner? Tillghman seems like a pleasant person but the next time she says anything either intelligent or insightful will be the first, Isenhour comes off like an extra from One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest and Lerner is more grating than a steel rake on a driveway.

They must do pretty good revenue at that place, so why the inability or unwillingness to hire competent help?

Literally LOL'd at the the Tripp Isenhour comment. Hilarious.
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterChicago John
Several years ago I had GC on my teevee for a few months. On one of the nightly discussion shows Hawkins looked at Lerner and said that because he was a "TV person," Lerner didn't know much, or something to that effect. Lerner's response made for a thoroughly interesting moment. Reminded me of some of the reviews I get back. Except I don't know who "they" are ;-)
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterKLG
<< They must do pretty good revenue at that place, so why the inability or unwillingness to hire competent help? >

Golf Channel is a comparatively low-rated cable network with very much a niche audience. Probably a rather well-heeled group of viewers, a demo coveted by advertisers but despite the monthly press releases bleating "best ratings month ever!" it's a fact that GC earns only a small fraction of eyeballs. And yes, they're owned by Comcast and NBC but by hiring and paying second-tier talent, personalities that will accept lower wages in exchange for "national" exposure, Golf Channel can continue to grow in profitability. I think I read that Tilghman collects some $350,000 a year (it may be more) but compare that with Jim Nantz at $5 million and Joe Buck at $7 million. Without Golf Channel, Tilghman is anchoring the local weekend sports slot at WFTV-TV in Orlando and getting along with $45,000 a year. Either that or selling sweaters as an assistant pro at some Florida resort for half that figure.
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterBenSeattle
Thanks Ben. I feared something along those lines might be the case.

And I feel a little guilty lumping Tilghman and Isenhour in with Lerner. They're harmless. He's the real atrocity. Ordinarily, you'd have to tune in to the Q & A portion of a beauty pageant to witness someone that vapid strain that hard to appear to have gravitas.
 "Now if they would only wake up and make the same assessment of the woefully out-of-place Damon Hack."

Boy you got that right! I have to turn the channel when that hack comes on...

PA, how did Nike "ruin" them?
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
He was suspended for drug usage. He was an alcoholic and drug addict. He has been known for doing cocaine. How else can you go from so high to so low?
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterArt
Art, what was the length of the suspension?
04.29.2014 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
yes he is known for blowing down a lot
07.27.2014 | Unregistered Commenterdd
The recent DJ news sheds some more light on the AK situation and gives credence to Art's claim that AK was suspended for drug usage. My guess is that while injured he had no brake on his demons and could have become a serial positive drug tester leading to a multi-year suspension. This is all wild ass speculation based on scuttlebutt, but with DJ's injury hiatuses now revealed as drug suspensions, it makes you wonder.
08.11.2014 | Unregistered CommenterMightyVeg
Kim just bought a new house in Dallas. Went an auction in OKC that was selling all his old furnishings. Auction service brought everything up from Dallas and stated his wife wanted new furnishings for the house. New million dollar home in Dallas may not be top of the line but definitely not living under a bridge either.
08.25.2014 | Unregistered Commenterduckfan
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07.12.2015 | Unregistered Commenterfriendship day

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