Braving the Snake Pit
March 16, 2014
By Dan Daly
I had a horrible nightmare last night and I don't want to scare you with too much detail, but I will tell you that it involved......The Snake Pit!!
I received that text on Saturday morning from a friend and haven’t stop laughing since. Is there anything dumber in all of golf than the Snake Pit or The Bear Trap? Before you waste any effort trying to come up with an answer I’ll save you the time…no.
I was in Colorado all week and didn’t watch a single second of the tournament, which I’m guessing equals the same amount of time most other people spent watching it as well. Or put a different way, a friend sent me a screen shot of the NBC “notables” leaderboard which included Jason Kokrak. With all due respect to Jason and his family, if he is a “notable” player in your tournament then your tournament has a huge problem. Well, that and again the fact that you have a Snake Pit.
I did keep up with it a little bit via twitter and basically there were two main stories to come out of the ever popular Valspar Championship.
1. Kevin Naaaaaaaa.
I saw that Kevin Naaaaaaaa was in the final group on Saturday and Sunday so I’m pretty sure the tournament averaged about 5 hours per round…luckily Jim Furyk came prepared. This guy can make even the groups ahead of him play slow.
I actually felt bad for Robert Garrigus who was paired with Naaaaaaaa the last two days. Garrigus is one of the fastest players on tour and thus had no chance of winning because of his horrible pairing. On Saturday night Garrigus said, "I'm not used to being put on the clock, that's the first time in nine years, actually the first time in 17 years as a professional I've ever got a bad time on the golf course. I started laughing."
It’s actually not funny, it’s really sad and the PGA Tour needs to do something about it. It of course being Kevin Naaaaaaaa. Every time he is in contention the guy he is paired with blows up because they are playing with a human yield sign. Even Ben Crane has to think this guy plays slow. If I was actually good at golf and had a chance to win a PGA Tournament (even the one at the Snake Pit) and I was paired with Kevin Naaaaaaaa I would smoke about 4 pounds of weed that morning just to make it feel like I was playing at a normal pace.
Garrigus shoots 69-66 (7-under) to take a three shot, 36 hole lead. Then he gets paired with Naaaaaaaa and shoots 70-75 over the weekend? Yeah, that’s not a coincidence.
Congratulations to John Senden for “taming the Snake Pit” but you need to send a nice big thank you to Kevin Naaaaaaaa for playing some great one on one defense against Garrigus over the weekend.
2. John Patrick Daly.
I think we can all agree the real story from Palm Harbor, FL came on Friday afternoon when my man JD fired a personal worst 90 (43-47). Let me be crystal clear though, that's not a criticism. On the contrary; JD actually had the professionalism and courage to turn in his scorecard when everyone else on tour would have WD and not turned in a card, citing, I don’t know…a toothache maybe?
JD didn’t quit despite a round which included no birdies, five bogeys, three doubles, and a crowd pleasing 12 on the par 4 16th to which he said, "It was a good 12. I got up-and-down for 12." I mean, it is the start of the Snake Pit after all.
In fact after his round Daly got pretty pissed on Twitter.
Some jackass Canadian named Robert Thompson tweeted “People seem surprised @PGA_JohnDaly shot 90 today. Have they not been paying attention to the last decade? #withdrawals #DQs #walkoffs”
To which Daly responded “u wanna play for some cash then we’ll see how ur game is jerk”
Suck it Canada.
Golf Digest ran an online article titled “Daly pulls a Daly, shoots 90 at the Valspar”, to which JD also took offense.
Personally, I ordered a John Daly Friday night at happy hour in honor of his 90. I applaud the man for making a 12, finishing his round, signing for his 90 and turning it in when most everyone else would have put that card in the shredder at the scorer’s tent. There is a reason he is beloved by millions of people. He’s human and he’s relatable.
JD is an easy target for sports writers and twitter hacks but the truth is there are only 33 men that have ever walked the face of the earth with more professional golf Major Championships than John Daly. Think about that for a second before you bash him and his golf game. And no, I am of no relation to John Daly; I just think the guy gets a bad rap.
My non-golf related thought of the day. There are 9,223,372,036,854,775,808 possible NCAA bracket outcomes. That's 9.2 quintillion for you mathematically challenged. So I think Warren Buffet’s one-billion dollars is safe. What I can tell you is that the East region is insanely stacked. Whoever wins the final 4 game between Florida and the winner of that region will win it all. Trust me on that one.
My favorite part of the NCAA Tournament though will always be the fact that it means the Masters is only three weeks away and I’m about to get inundated with Masters Commercials. Yes please!
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