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Monday
Jan082018

"Plenty of rancor over anchored putting among PGA Tour Champions crew"

We know the geezers tour regulars are not thrilled that the top two players seem to almost-anchor their putters, and as their season opener nears, Golfweek's Eamon Lynch examines just how much joy this is bothering the senior set.

Last year's public issues with Bernhard Langer and Scott McCarron came from Golf Channel's Brandel Chamblee suggesting they were bending the rules. 

“Brandel and I have been friends for a long time,” he says. “I’ve worked in the TV business. I know you say things sometimes you aren’t really sure about. And he usually does his homework. He’s very diligent. This time he missed the boat.”

If Chamblee did “miss the boat” with his comments, he has plenty of company on the dock. Rancor over the anchoring rule, and the success McCarron and Langer have enjoyed with their method, has shaken the senior set.

“It’s a huge issue,” says Tom Pernice Jr., a five-time winner on the PGA Tour Champions. “A lot of players aren’t going to say anything about it to the press. It’s not fair. If you’re playing for a living, there’s a skill level in putting and that is being able to control the fulcrum point.”

Yikes, glad we got that all sorted out last year!

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Reader Comments (23)

This business about players quitting the game if they aren’t permitted to use a long putter, is nonsense.

If 1% use the long putter, and only 15% of them truly would throw a tantrum and quit if they couldn’t use one, how many are we talking about here? Yet the tyranny of the minority is what led to the clumsy, poorly conceived rule change.

It’s hurt the USGA and R&A, it’s tainted the achievements of Langer and it’s hurt the game.

To the people who whined, threatened to quit and essentially extorted the weak-willed ruling bodies into their horrible administrative move, thanks a lot. Your selfishness has made the game worse.
01.8.2018 | Unregistered CommenterDoctor
It's golf.........and should look like golf. Putter should resemble the other clubs in the bag. Using a long putter and not quite anchoring is "almost" cheating and not in the spirit of the game.
01.9.2018 | Unregistered Commenterjerseychris
How many players would not sign
McCarron or Langer’s cards last year
If they are anchoring, and players haven’t the fortitude to do anything about it
Then there can’t be that much rancor
On a tour that constantly changes rules to keep players who aren’t competitive
In the fields, I find it hard to believe they would not try to x any player out if it could add one more dollar in yet another retirement fun

And there have been a lot of things traditional golfers didn’t like the “look” of. We moved a little bit past some of those
01.9.2018 | Unregistered CommenterSpoilt
Shouldn't be allowed - period.
01.9.2018 | Unregistered CommenterIvan Morris
It’s time the R&A put these issue to bed - its golf for Christ's sake, start playing it without aids - if they can't, kick them of our golf courses.

The real underlying issues if that many can't play golf - to do so they need help in the form of aids - but using aids defeats the very idea of playing golf because the game is based on a single principle, which is one of challenging the golfer both in mind and body - something no longer understood in the commercial field that is golf (the Pro game and Course Design). To use aids, is an admission that your game is Sh@t and you can't face the challenge - in the end its that simple.

So these players should take their long putters and put it where the Sun does not shine, that at least may give real golfers something to smile about.
01.9.2018 | Unregistered CommenterTom Morris
Spoilt, if a player refuses to sign the card, who wins in that instance? Because I can guarantee you 98% of the media will come down on that guy as a "sore loser", "take your medicine like a man", etc.

Most importantly, it shouldn't be a player who would have to decide he wants to risk that in order to fix the issue.
01.9.2018 | Unregistered CommenterPat(another one)
At some point, one of the players is going to have to stand as close to these long putters as possible to protect the field. If that bothers them, tough. Get used to it. Too bad there is no one out there to get in their faces...what is Azinger doing these days?
01.9.2018 | Unregistered CommenterBDF
Who said at Inverness IIRC that a certain player is a fine young golfer, but he needs to learn to mark his ball like a professional? I seem to remember that said player's Footjoys were in that fine young player's line of sight every time he marked. So, there are precedents: "Hey, Bernhard (or Scott), let's see some daylight between your left hand and your sternum! Okay?"

Of course, this whole thing is a matter of flawed aesthetics. A lot of people in the Game of Golf and the Business of Golf don't do "new" very well. And besides, the USGA dropped the ball in the beginning on this one, regarding whether the move with an anchored putter is a proper "swing," and that should have been that.
01.9.2018 | Unregistered CommenterKLG
Let them putt like that all they want, but they should be forced to swing every other club in their bag the same way. See how quick they change then
01.9.2018 | Unregistered Commentersd84
From a link in the Lynch piece: http://golfweek.com/2017/07/07/usga-backs-bernhard-langer-scott-mccarron-in-light-of-anchoring-debate/

Langer is playing by the rules. Whether we agree with the USGA interpretation is another matter. Is it a coincidence the grumbling by fellow competitors at Salem Country Club after 36-holes (67-65), that led to Langer being "assured" by the USGA he was in compliance, turned into 72-74 on the weekend? A 14-blow difference tends to raise an eyebrow when it happens to the #1 player, one known for not wilting when in the hunt.
01.9.2018 | Unregistered CommenterD. maculata
@jerseychris: Determining what a sport should look like is a ridiculous notion. Oh, and who exactly gets to decide what golf looks like? Golf today hardly looks like golf when I was a kid.
01.9.2018 | Unregistered CommenterSchlasser
The rule should written such that it is incumbent and the resposibility of the player, who is adopting the anchoring method, to not have an appearance of anchoring. The player must go beyond their "intent' and must show or prove there is space between the player's elbow to their hands, is not in any way touching any part of the body.
01.9.2018 | Unregistered CommenterZokol
further updates on equipment issues! Just attended the Scottish launch of the new Taylor Made M3 and M4. Their top players- Rahm, McIlroy, Johnson, Day, Rose all beside themselves that they will now be able to hit it even harder without fear of it going off line. Wonderful!! Can't wait. Johnson will probably only need his driver, two chippers and his Spider.
01.9.2018 | Unregistered CommenterChico
If I were DJ, I'd go with #2:
http://thegolfwedge.com/best-golf-chipper/
01.9.2018 | Unregistered CommenterKLG
I remember McCarron, who was working in TV at the time, calling Phil Mickelson a 'cheater' for using an old Ping wedge that was vested from the groove rules. Mickelson did it to make a point of how ridiculous the rule was.

McCarron is such a hypocrite. And a cheater.
01.9.2018 | Unregistered CommenterBig Ed Mustafa
Put some colored chalk on the top of the grip before teeing off on #1 and we'll know instantly who's anchoring.
01.9.2018 | Unregistered CommenterAl B. Tross
Sorry folks. Langer is cheating. Someone has to say it. Anything that look like anchoring is anchoring. He knows it. Just trying to get away with it as long as he can. I would never sign his card, as a few did not do last year, and guess what, the news cycle go on. Rubish and rotten.
01.9.2018 | Unregistered CommenterE!
"Geezers Tour" Geoff?? Not your usual writing style.
01.9.2018 | Unregistered CommenterDavid
E!: Are you joking with this, "Anything that look like anchoring is anchoring"? Regardless of whether or not you agree with the rule, you can't be that stupid to actually stand by that statement. Oh, and who refused to sign Langer's card?
01.9.2018 | Unregistered CommenterSchlasser
Tour professionals powering right along and actually putting better using the broomstick with an unanchored technique -- who would have ever thought this could happen? Crazy I'm telling you!

@Big Ed interesting observation about McCarron and his prior whinging on the SG Eye 2 wedges as it relates to Mickelson. That said, has nothing to do with his current putting technique which is 100% within the rules. Your issue is with the USGA, not Scott or Bernhard or Scott or others who will be switching back soon.

Happy New Year and wonderful 2018 to all!!!
01.9.2018 | Unregistered CommenterSunny Sentiments
"Hey, Bernhard (or Scott), let's see some daylight between your left hand and your sternum! Okay?"

Don't overlook the lack of daylight between Bernhard's forearm and his torso. If the forearm rests on the body then that is Anchoring. Scott mcarron has his forearm well out from his torso - no anchoring there.
01.9.2018 | Unregistered CommenterBunker Dweller
It's the main reason I have zero desire to watch the champions tour. Why would I want to watch Langer at the best of times, let alone effectively cheating
01.9.2018 | Unregistered CommenterIan B
@No Longer +1
01.10.2018 | Unregistered CommenterSunny Sentiments

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