Uproar over advancing technology in golf equipment is silly
All this worry and hand-wringing over advancing technology in golf equipment strikes me as a little hysterical.
It reminds me of that era when basketball fans were clamoring to have the basket moved higher than 10 feet, when it seemed like everyone and his brother was dunking. Thank god the basketball gods never did, because it would have changed the game, making it different from the one you and I play.
Yes, pro golfers are longer off the tee these days, just like hoopsters are dunking more. But, at least from a specators’ vantage, isn’t it fun to watch high-flying slamma-jammas? And in golf, isn’t it fun to watch Tiger Woods drive a par-4?
Basketball is about more than just leaping – it has a hundred different subtlties. Golf is the same – it’s about more than just slamming the ball off the tee. If they start restricting the pros’ equipment, it will remove that connection to the fans. Jack Nicklaus is full of beans – he just doesn’t want to see any of his precious records broken.
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This is precisely the point that makes it impossible to compare players of the last 10-15 years with others in any era...they literally are beginning to play a game called golf but one that has less and less to do with any benchmark that was once familiar.
Granted, equipment is much more important in golf than any of those sports, but I think not enough to render comparisons invalid. They still have to chip and putt and be accurate off the tee.
I hope you're not going to call for asterisks.
The ONLY reason there is NOT an effective technology standard in golf that protects the integrity of golf courses that stood the test for decades is the Karsten lawsuit. A suit, by the way, that has done incredible harm to the game. Baltisrol is only the latest of the golf course Frankensteins. 500+ par 4s?? 650 yd par 5s?? Ridiculous. Except that......if Baltusrol were played from the same configuaration it was in the 1970s for a Major the winning score would have been -25 or better.
The realization then would have been what the reality truly is...technology has changed golf to a degree that it is becoming unrecognizable.
Chipping and putting will always be important and separate players because technology is rapidly equalizing every other aspect of the game...or making it obsolete. It simply proves the point.
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