A Few World Golf Hall Of Fame Induction Speech Highlights

There is Garry Smits' hometown Times-Union story and Doug Ferguson's gamer, or the asapsports.com transcript if you have time. Hopefully the Hall of Fame will put up the entire speeches on their website in the coming weeks.

First, Dan Jenkins:

I have to tell you if you're a writer, a few years ago at the Atlanta airport this guy came up to me and said, I know you.  I said, I don't think so.  He said, no, no, no, I've seen you.  Why do I know you?  I said, I'm just a guy catching an airplane.  He said, no, I know you.  I've seen you somewhere.  Who are you?  I said, well‑‑ I thought maybe he'd seen me on television.  I said I'm a guy that writes for a national sports magazine and I've written four or five best sellers, and he goes, "well, you don't have to be sarcastic."

And Jenkins again…

And I said, Ben, I'm flattered and I appreciate that, and I'm embarrassed to have to turn down an offer of free golf lessons from the greatest player in the world, but I just want to be a sports writer.  That's all I've ever wanted to be.  He looked at me like I've seen him look at other people, with that cold stare, and you don't know whether you're going to get a bullet in the head or a dagger in the heart, and you wait and it seems like an eternity, and then he smiled and he said, well, keep working at it.  That's what I've been doing for the last 60 years, and I guess I'll keep doing it until I topple over and they start to work on my tombstone.  I've already picked out two things.  The first one is going to be, "I knew this would happen."  But I've got a better one.  The better one is you guys hold it down here, I've off to the next great adventure.  Thank you all.

Renton Laidlaw introducing Sandy Lyle:

What a night this is for Sandy Lyle, and I must say for myself, as well, being a Scot, it's wonderful to be here at the World Golf Hall of Fame and have a Scot being inducted into the Hall.  If you were expecting perhaps Sandy Lyle to turn up today in his Highland finery, you know like a sort of golfing Rob Roy or a golfing funny Prince Charlie, you're going to be disappointed, because, unfortunately, his kilt, a Stewart tartan kilt, is in fact locked away in a display cabinet in Jack Peter's museum, so he couldn't wear it.  But the one thing we are happy about is that he is here.  And I'll tell you why.  Sandy Lyle is the 11th Scot to be inducted into the Hall of Fame, but he's making his try.  He's had a lot of firsts in his career and he's got another first here today.

The first ten who were honored, the first ten Scots who were honored here today were all dead.  They got the award posthumously.  So Sandy Lyle is the first living Scot to come to the Hall of Fame and be awarded.

Sandy Lyle, inductee:

Now, in the press conference later that evening at the TPC, I got asked from a certain press guy who said, now that you've won the Open Championship and you've won also now the TPC, what do you feel the difference is.  And I very quickly replied, it was 125 years.

And another little occasion when I was in Los Angeles when Tiger Woods played at the Riviera Club, and I got asked by a very impatient sort of film crew, I'd just finished second in the tournament, and then I was asked with this microphone in my mouth with the cameras rolling what do you think of Tiger Woods.  So I very quickly replied, thinking I don't think I've played that golf course before.

But he's not done too badly since, I know that.

Hollis Stacy, inductee:

It's no small wonder why I love the stillness of the golf course.  I loved everything about it.  I loved the game at an early age more so.  To me it was heaven on earth.  I could actually hear myself think.

I love the small of dew in the morning, the moss in the trees and the basic richness of the ecosystem of the humid south.

A few weeks ago at Generation W I was asked, what was the defining moment of my career.  December of '66 Golf World, there was a notice for a USGA junior girls event in California that would change my life forever.  I sent the entry fee of $2 immediately, six months early.  I was entry fee No.1.

I met little girls just like me who loved to play golf.  After that experience, there were never enough hours in the day, days in the week, weeks in the year to play golf.

Peter Alliss, inductee:

But the first competition I ever played was 1946, the boys championship, played on the west side of Edinburgh at a course called Brunsfield.  I went there and I was playing off scratch at that time, and I went there and they picked me to play for England boys against the Scots, and I played very well and we beat the Scots.  They'd been beating us every year we went about 8 & 6 or something.  I was installed as one of the favorites to win, sailed through a few rounds, and I was up against a little lad calls Donald Dunston in the semifinals, a rather pasty, pale looking boy with a very bad complexion, and I was six foot tall and bordering on the beautiful, I suppose.  I really was.  I mean, I look at those old pictures, and I really fancied myself.

Anyway, we set off, and I won the first couple of holes, and I was‑‑ it was a beautiful day.  Anyway, he beat me 3 & 2, which brought me down to earth a bit, and going back on the train, my father said, well, you've learnt your lesson, you should have done this, you should have defended when you attacked, but I don't think there's any point in you trying for any further education, you're not going to be a doctor or lawyer at calm den.  You could come and be my unpaid assistant.  I thought that was very generous.  He was remember a Yorkshire man and had been spending a lot of time with the Scots in the first world war.  So it came to pass I went to work for my dear old dad, and I had no concept at that time going back a bit crest fallen having been beaten by this pimply‑faced youth when I had so much to offer, I had no idea that the game of golf would take me down so many wonderful paths.

Tim Finchem, inexplicably inserted to tell us everything Phil is and Tiger is not. Go to the transcript if you want to learn about b-to-b impactful interfacing.

Phil Mickelson, inductee:

Bones is such a great man.  He's a great caddie.  He's a most loyal friend.  In the mid‑'90s we were playing a tournament in Las Vegas and there was an earthquake at 2:00 in the morning.  The chandelier was swaying from side to side hitting the ceiling.  His roommate told me the next day that Bones leaped out of bed, grabbed the clubs and ran outside.  He didn't want anything to fall on them and hurt them.

When Amy got diagnosed three years ago, he and his wife Jen drove overnight to be with us the next day in San Diego.  When Amy went through surgery, they were there through it all, and I cannot think of a better person, a better friend to have spent the last 19 years with along this journey than Jim Bones Mackay.

Phil again…talking about wife Amy:

She didn't know much about golf when we first started out, and so when I was away on a tournament and I ended up missing the cut and I called her and I was a little bit down and I had missed the cut, and she would say I don't understand what does that mean.  I would say I'm getting on a plane I'm coming home this weekend.  She would say, well, I like this missing the cut.

A little earlier in our relationship than we probably should have been doing this, I was going to go to Paris, and I thought, wow, I cannot imagine‑‑ I would love to spend time in Paris with Amy.  I couldn't think of a better person.  And so I called Gary and Renee, two of my favorite people.  Gary runs my foundation now, level headed, two people I admire the most and explained to them how this was somehow a good idea.  And Gary in his great parenting put it on us and said, listen, you're going to have plenty of time.  You're going to have plenty of time to go to Paris together.  Amy, it's your decision, but you're not going.  And I have found this to be very effective in my own parenting skills.

But I do want to say to him that we still have not been to Paris together.  However, in two weeks we'll be there.  Amy turns 40, and we'll have a chance to do that.

And Phil one last time...

The way I see it is there are a lot of people that we are all in this together, from my management company that handles things behind the scenes, from fellow PGA TOUR players, wives and caddies to members of the media, we are all in this together, this great game.  We're all in it to promote this game, to enjoy this game and enjoy the journey and the opportunities that it brings.  I want to thank everybody for competing against me, for your friendship, for sharing this journey, for telling the stories the way the media do.  For being a part of this whole journey.  Again, this has been so much fun, and I love sharing this with everybody.