When Jordan Spieth sunk his final putt to win the 2015 Masters we all knew we were watching a champion deserving of the name. When he arrived on the final day of the tournament he was already in the history books, his -16 score had broken the 54-hole record and nobody could quite believe what they were witnessing.
Why after all this am I not excited to see Jordan Spieth win another major? Let me explain. I’m the type of fan who could talk about golf until I beat a wet wall of paint in a drying contest, I love it. So when I say I don’t like watching Jordan play it’s not because I don’t admire and respect him – he’s a genius – it’s because I find him boring.
There I said it, BORING! The elephant in the room, the terd in the hamper, the cat is out of the bag.
Many would argue that this is an unavoidable quality of being the best; Spieth has to bore us with his relentless consistency to stay at the top. This type of mental strength is an unobtainable quality for 99.99% of us, Jordan can repeat repeat repeat and it’s an incredible gift. Is this good for golf and its popularity? Not in the slightest!
Honestly, tell me Jordan gets you reaching for the remote with the same enthusiasm that Tiger, Mickelson or McIlroy would and I’ll reverse consume a 3-iron.
He plays a passionless brand of golf
Anyone can see that the brand of golf Jordan plays is a tad uninspiring. Again I have to stress that he plays to win, not to entertain, but a quick look at the stats and you will start to see the wood for the trees.
If I said a player that hits more shots close to the pin was entertaining, would you agree? Spieth was ranked 49th for greens in regulation last year but was saved by his ability to sink 90% of putts under 10 feet, sure a very impressive stat but I’ll take a Rory McIlroy 3-wood approach and two putt every day of the week. Tiger was number one for ‘greens in regulation’ and ‘proximity to the hole’ in his breakout year. Look at Rory, Rickie and Day, their ball striking stats spell a more sensational playing style.
Trying to find a Jordan Spieth driver off the deck is like looking for a needle in a haystack of needles. Should this sort of thing determine how entertaining a golfer is? Certainly not, but yes absolutely.
Seve Ballesteros was called ‘The Matador’ because he played with fire and passion, he went for greens in two, he was an artist on the golf course not a robot. Jordan Spieth will never be called the ‘Car Park King’, Boredom Spiethbot will always drift emotionlessly from one green to the next and that isn’t fun to watch.
Last year he took on just 6 approaches that were 250 yards or more from the green, yes it’s sensible course management, but the people who aren’t regular golfers didn’t start watching Tiger because he played safe on par fives, see my point? He attacked with venom, he dominated, and that’s why golf became popular again.
Tiger was first for greens in regulation and first for ‘par breakers’ during his breakout year. He played aggressive, uncompromisingly sexy golf which had the people flocking in their masses. Can McIlroy, Day and Fowler do that? Absolutely! These three players have the pizzazz, the massive drives, the towering long irons; just like Palmer, Nicklaus, Ballesteros, Norman, Mickelson and Tiger, these guys are pure entertainment.
This probably explains why Rickie Fowler and Rory McIlroy were asked to play in an “under the lights” event before the US Open this year, it’s what the crowd wants to see and even the notoriously sluggish PGA have started to understand this.
Jordan will become a commercial puppet
Obviously the golf critique is just tongue-in-cheek pub room chat designed to raise an interesting point, I apologise Jordan. However, the commercial side of things is well below par for the benefit of the game.
“When do you most enjoy drinking a Coca-Cola?” Ehhhhh. “I most enjoy drinking a Coca-Cola on these hot summer days here in Texas, really in the evenings” he said, squinting at the teleprompter, “you sit back and put an ice cold coke on ice,” he adds with resignation in his eyes.
WTF was that ^^
This commercial should have never been allowed to air! How could they show a professional athlete performing a sex act on a company like Coca-Cola. That commercial tasted about as good as a ‘coke life’, accept it wasn’t as honest as the the world’s most dishonest fizzy drink.
Other players create a personality around the sponsorship work they do; Rory McIlroy is a globetrotting twenty-something who works hard but knows how to relax. Rickie Fowler is an adrenaline junkie who attacks life. Jordan Spieth’s promo work just screams “Hey, I’ll do anything for the right contract”.
The world number one is a ‘fine young man’ and clearly well liked. This article was very unfair but it needed to be said, a well groomed and sponsorship friendly dude is not going to reinvigorate golf in the same way Rory and Rickie can. For this reason most people would rather see the others guys win.
Ok I’m ready for the repercussions…