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top 10 ALL TIME GREATEST

Discussion in 'General Golf Talk' started by Libre, Nov 25, 2017.

  1. Libre

    Libre Well-Known Member

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    Not based on overall achievement, or any single stat.
    Just - their measure of sustained dominance.
    Authority. Composure on the course. Impact on the game.
    And the world.

    In the golf Hall of Fame in my mind, here is my list:

    1. Tiger
    2. Jack
    3. Arnie
    4. Ben Hogan
    5. Seve B
    6. Greg Norman
    7. Phil M
    8. Sam Snead
    9. Byron Nelson (out of respect - I don't know his game at all)
    10.

    I can't think of anyone else in this league.
    Taking nominations for the Hall.
    No active players (although Tiger may not be completely washed up - he's automatically my number 1 no matter what).

    Please feel free to add or delete from this list to reflect YOUR hall.
     
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  2. Wi-Golfer

    Wi-Golfer Golfer on hiatus. Supporting Member

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    Gary Player over Greg Norman.
     
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  3. limpalong

    limpalong Mental Ward Escapee Supporting Member

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    1. Tiger Tiger
    2. Jack Jack
    3. Arnie Arnie
    4. Ben Hogan Hogan
    5. Seve B Seve
    6. Greg Norman Tom Watson
    7. Phil M Snead (You said no active players. Phil is still playing a fairly full schedule.)
    8. Sam Snead Player
    9. Byron Nelson Trevino
    10. Chi-Chi
     
  4. Libre

    Libre Well-Known Member

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    Tom was always in Jack's shadow - although he did a lot - but to me Greg had a bigger impact world wide. And Tom's struggles in his latter career didn't help his image. But this is just hair splitting. Tiger Woods followed by Jack stand out far in front of all the others.
     
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  5. TEA Time

    TEA Time Grumpy Gilmore Staff Member Admin

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    Admin Post
    1. Tiger Tiger Happy Gilmore
    2. Jack Jack Shooter McGavin
    3. Arnie Arnie Bob Barker
    4. Ben Hogan Hogan
    5. Seve B Seve
    6. Greg Norman Tom Watson
    7. Phil M Snead (You said no active players. Phil is still playing a fairly full schedule.)
    8. Sam Snead Player
    9. Byron Nelson Trevino
    10. Chi-Chi

    The rest seem about right.
     
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  6. Libre

    Libre Well-Known Member

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    I have no problem adding Gary Player to the list - there is an open slot. But not over Greg Norman. While Gary is clearly light years ahead of Greg in terms of Majors (9 vs 2), Greg was runner up in majors 8 x but there is an amazing stat for Greg and I can't find an equivalent for Gary and maybe that's because they didn't rank golfers the same way in Gary's day. But take a look at this list and then tell me Greg doesn't belong:
    Weeks at number one
    Rank Player Weeks
    1 Tiger Woods 683
    2 Greg Norman 331
    3 Nick Faldo 97
    4 Rory McIlroy 95

    and Chi-Chi was a colorful player but he's not embossed in my mind as in this category but I'll have to look at his record closer.

    I'd love to nominate Fred Couples, actually, but he's not up there with Hogan and Woods. Fred was one of the best players of his time, but not of ALL time. The fact that anyone could beat him at all was a testament to how good THEY were.
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2017
  7. TheTrueReview

    TheTrueReview "Playing it straight" Supporting Member

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    I miss these guys.

    [​IMG]
     
  8. PaPaD

    PaPaD Club ho, geezer........ Supporting Member

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    If you really count composure on the course, I gotta move Tiger down a few places. Arnie and Jack seemed more professionally composed.
     
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  9. IrishGolfer

    IrishGolfer Fac ut gaudeam Supporting Member

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    Forgetting...

    Walter Hagen
    Tom Morris Snr and Jnr
    Harry Vardon
     
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  10. Fairwaysplitter3320

    Fairwaysplitter3320 Recovering Equipment Ho...off the wagon again. Staff Member Admin

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    And Bobby Jones Jr.
     
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  11. limpalong

    limpalong Mental Ward Escapee Supporting Member

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    Reading over the hour by hour, day by day, month by month, year by year historical narrative of the Karsten vs. PGA battle I lost a lot of respect for Palmer and Nicklaus. I knew Jack was one of the instigators but did not realize Arnie was even more so. Palmer stated over and over that he would break Karsten/Ping... and, thank goodness, he didn't.

    So, to take into consideration all the aspects mentioned in the original post... and to see where the poster did not specify "player"....

    Not based on overall achievement, or any single stat.
    Just - their measure of sustained dominance.
    Authority. Composure on the course. Impact on the game.
    And the world.


    1.) Tiger: Sustained dominance, impact on the game
    2.) Nicklaus: Sustained dominance, impact on the game
    3.) Karsten Solheim: Impact on the game, the world of golf, authority
    4.) Hogan: Sustained dominance, impact on the game (both player and manufacturer)
    5.) Eli Callaway: Impact on the game, the world of golf
    6.) Bobby Jones, Jr.: Sustained dominance, The Masters, the world of golf, authority
    7.) Gary Player: Sustained dominance, ambassador that grew golf across the globe
    8.) Tom Morris, Sr. and Jr.: (Thanks, IG) Sustained dominance when golf was played in goat pastures and "built" the game we love and play decades later.

     
  12. Libre

    Libre Well-Known Member

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    limpalong - what did Palmer and Nicklaus do to lose your respect? I remember the USGA vs Karsten Solheim war, but I didn't follow the details as you have. I remember the USGA declaring the Ping Eye 2 clubs to be illegal in tournament play, due to the non-conforming shape of the grooves, which the USGA claimed gave the player an unfair advantage - unless everyone used the Ping clubs - which of course would put Palmer, Nicklaus, and Hogan out of the golf club manufacturing business. The players mostly were rooting for Solheim, because they indeed wanted to play the square grooves. Finally they all came to terms on the shape of the grooves.

    I suspect that Arnie and Jack were as ruthless off the course as on it. They had to win. It was in their nature. Power corrupts, as we know so well. Almost every great figure in history has a dark side in addition to their accomplishments. Just reading about what we now know about Columbus and Edison, etc, can make you lose respect for all our heroes.
    But Arnie and Jack????
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2018 at 5:33 PM
  13. limpalong

    limpalong Mental Ward Escapee Supporting Member

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    The USGA, after employing an independent testing facility, found the Ping grooves were within the thickness of a dollar bill from being in conformance with the rules. They also found other manufactuers' grooves were farther out of conformance than were those tested from Ping. So, the USGA and Karsten came to an agreement where they both shook hands and walked away. The agreement had no fault or dollars attached. Karsten agreed to change his grooves to where they would be in total conformance, gave his patent for a hand-held device that would check conformance of grooves to the USGA with no compensation, and the USGA left the Eye 2 grooves okay to use in competition for a number of years.
    Ping was quickly becoming the predominant iron of choice for both professional and amateur. Nicklaus owned most of MacGregor. Palmer owned Pro Group. Their sales were dropping and the professionals playing their clubs were talking about changing to Ping irons. Deane Beaman was head of the PGA. Beaman changed the method of measuring grooves so that only the Ping irons would be non-conforming... that method deviated from the USGA/R&A standard methodss. This kept the professionals in the PGA who had stakes in the equipment companies happy. Karsten was an "outsider" taking over the golf equipment business by storm. Beaman also felt that if the PGA could "license" a specific manufactuer's irons, a specific ball, etc. there was a lot of money to be made by way of that licensing agreement.
    With only his irons being singled out as non-conforming and thousands of both amateurs and professionals now wondering if their clubs would no longer by "legal", Karsten had to litigate the PGA. Remember... The long term litigation was between KMC (Karsten Manufacturing Company and the PGA. Not the USGA!!) The litigation drug on and on with depositions and delays. As this wore on and the attorneys became more deeply involved, it was apparent that Karsten would prevail. Karsten had sued the PGA for $100 million. The PGA had a $1 million liability policy that would not come close to covering Beaman. And, none of the professionals who had joined the PGA in the litigation would be covered at all. The professionals dropped out of the suit. That left it pretty apparent that the PGA would soon be owned... lock, stock, and barrel... by Karsten Solheim. Karsten did not want to see the PGA... or anyone... put out of business. He just wanted the irons he had designed to no longer have their integrity... nor his... tainted. Finally, the PGA chose to honor the same agreement that Karsten had struck with the USGA and life went on. John Solheim felt that the extended litigation took 5 to 7 years off his dad's life. Ping suffered monumentally by having Karsten focused on the litigation instead of club design.
    Once the litigation was over, Karsten even sent personal checks to the professionals who had joined the PGA against him to help cover their legal costs. He and Louise continued to support professional golf, especially the LPGA. He and Louise personally wrote the check that would fund the Solheim Cup for its first 18 years just so the LPGA could get global attention similar to the Ryder Cup.

    That's a short synopsis. If you ever get a chance to own the book "And the Putter Went Ping" it is an amazing historical read, with lots of substantiating documentation. I've been working on it since Christmas and am just barely half through. I will read a while and then wonder if I caught all that I just read. You go back and re-read to clarify in your mind what actually happened. Karsten was a genius who held lots of patents, not all in the golf industry. He began the idea for his first putter while working as an engineer with GE. The son of immigrants to the U.S., he started with nothing and ended up building a multi-million dollar company that employed hundreds of people. He was extremely generous with sharing his profits with his employees, many of them staying with KMC for 30 to 40 years.
     
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  14. PaPaD

    PaPaD Club ho, geezer........ Supporting Member

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    That's business, Limp. Let's rate Palmer and Nicklaus for their on-the-course behavior. If we count off-the-course stuff, we'd have to eliminate Woods altogether.
     
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  15. limpalong

    limpalong Mental Ward Escapee Supporting Member

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    Agree 100%. If we are talking the players and their impact on the Game, I indicated my opinion in the earliest post. There, I rated Nicklaus and Palmer as #2 and #3. As the thread was revived, I reread the original post. No where did it specify players, even thought that was intimated. The OP also used qualifiers of "impact on the game" and "the world".
    In my second listing, I should have also included Gary Adams. Adams started Taylor Made and brought about the advent of metal drivers and fairway woods. Had it not been for Adams, Karsten, Eli Callaway, etc.... if the implements used to play this Game were left to the professionals playing the game we would still be using persimmon or laminated maple drivers, thin as butter knife blade irons, and 8802 style putters.
    So many fans of this Game are familiar only with the Greats they have seen on television. That was exemplified by the phenomenal impact Tiger had on this Game. No one... NO ONE had ever played the game as well and excited not only those playing the Game but motivating people to take up the Game. Being an "equipment junkie" I love to get more into the history of the Game and the evolution thought the years. Hickory shafts... Gutta percha balls... liquid center balls.... I even have one or two of the old Worthington steel center balls.
    The Game has come a long ways since Old Tom Morris and Young Tom Morris... and before them. It's come a long ways from the days purses would not pay the players' gas money to get from tournament to tournament. It was the side bets and the Calcuttas behind the scenes where they made their traveling money. Those who could envision a better club design in their minds were just as important as the players who could envision a baby draw to a tucked pin... and stick it there.
     
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  16. Libre

    Libre Well-Known Member

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    limpalong, thanks for filling us in.

    I think the parameter "composure on the course" limits the field to players - which, as has been noted, I intended. Not manufacturers or designers. I mean, feel free to name whomever you like. There are no "rules" to this thread.

    re Solheim vs PGA - and Palmer, Nicklaus, et al:
    I have respect for Karsten Solheim - lots of it.
    I think innovators deserve a lot of credit - and Solheim certainly received his share. It's a pity that he got tied up in legal battles, but when you challenge the industry leaders, they tend to fight back.
    I had mentioned Edison earlier. I've done some reading about him, and his "war" with Tesla. You know, Edison had significant investment in DC power - being the first to supply electricity on an industrial scale to several cities. Tesla had discovered/invented AC power - a clearly superior technology for large scale power production. Edison stood to lose huge contracts to Tesla and his backer, George Westinghouse. Edison did everything to discredit Tesla, up to and including electrocuting elephants. He also stiffed Tesla on a $50,000 debt. Tesla and Westinghouse, of course, won the power contracts with their far superior AC power technology, and Westinghouse cleaned up. Tesla, however, had no interest in cleaning up and died a pauper in a hotel room in Manhattan. A couple of Tesla's other minor inventions (that he gave away for free): wireless radio and x-rays. Others got the credit and the money. Tesla wasn't after credit or money. He just wanted to work in his lab. Almost every industry (including golf clubs) uses technology invented by Tesla. And he also got on J.P. Morgan's sh!t list (never a good thing) for stating he could provide limitless, FREE, electricity to the world. So Morgan screwed him and burnt Tesla's Long Island lab to the ground.

    And that was a fight about distribution of electricity - one of the most important innovations in human history. Complete with backstabbing and probably worse. Compare that to some famous golfers trying to measure grooves a certain way, so they wouldn't lose their investments. Not that it wasn't important or anything - I mean, after all, it's golf! And by the way, if it was over spec by the thickness of a dollar bill, it was over spec.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2018 at 11:45 PM
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  17. limpalong

    limpalong Mental Ward Escapee Supporting Member

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    GREAT Post, Libre!!! Now you've piqued my interest in finding some reading re the Edison/Tesla history. Our power grids are in shambles. We've probably seen more money and R&D go into the development of modern golf clubs and new courses than we have the maintenance of our power grids. Even though all 5 grids are interconnected, the phase synchronization equipment from grid to grid is ancient. Politics have tainted the ability to modernize our electric power infrastructure. The dependence of today's generation on digital technology makes the Country extremely vulnerable to a nationwide blackout.
    Will get to the library this week and begin digging... after clearing more snow and getting estimates on repair of the wife's car I wrecked yesterday.:mad:
     
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  18. PaPaD

    PaPaD Club ho, geezer........ Supporting Member

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    Limp, have you checked for a hickory organization in Kansas? I think you'd enjoy the experience. I have not even played an event yet, but I posted a thread on WRX expressing my interest and am shocked by the number of guys reaching out to me offering help! Tad Moore himself called me with tips on how to rebuild the irons. A guy from Omaha emailed me offering advice on how to select brands. The hosting club in Orlando for my event next week is loaning me clubs. These guys are a welcoming bunch who want to preserve the original Game.
     
  19. limpalong

    limpalong Mental Ward Escapee Supporting Member

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    When we lived in the KC area, 20 years ago, there was a hickory organization there. They had lots of fun. Am sure one could find such a group most anywhere today. We each have our "sweet spots". I've never seemed to be able to stoke an interest in the hickory or mashies or niblicks or rut irons. I can't even seem to get interested in the beautiful world of persimmon or laminated maple woods. Those were such fantastic times when people enjoyed a genuine love of the Game. They moved the Game forward with "tools" most today would give up the game rather than use. My "sweet spot" is more the reading of history and how engineering has changed the Game rather than playing with those old clubs. I will bag Eye 2 irons simply because they offer nothing less than the irons manufactured today. OTOH, I would not bag the Ping laminated drivers because I feel those would change the game I play.
     
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